Mine Workers' Roberts slams Blankenship ads on Upper Big Branch


The head of the United Mine Workers of America said he is disgusted by a series of television ads financed by former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship that claim a West Virginia senator and federal mine safety officials are hiding the truth behind the 2010 Upper Big Branch explosion.

UMWA President Cecil Roberts said in a statement Monday that Blankenship has ripped open the wounds of 29 families who lost family members in the blast with the advertisements that have been running on West Virginia television stations.

Blankenship was convicted in federal court in April 2016 of skirting regulations related to Big Branch and was released from prison in May.

In one of the three video clips, a sister of one of the miners killed, Gwen Thomas, calls on the Mine Safety and Health Administration, Sen. Joe Manchin and President Donald Trump to help make gas records of the April 2010 disaster available to the public.

The ads can be seen by clicking here.