Teaching Mine Safety in Hutchinson

HUTCHINSON, Kan. (AP) _ A Barton County business owner who drowned in January after falling into a water-filled sandpit was the state mining industry's first fatality in five years.

Sixty-four-year-old Robert Deines of Hoisington, wasn't wearing a flotation jacket when he fell from a platform at Dartmouth Sand & Gravel near Great Bend.

But Deines had attended several training courses through the Kansas Small Mine and Small Business Safety program at Hutchinson Community College.

Details of how or why Deines fell from the platform into the water are unclear.

But a spokeswoman for the Mine Safety and Health Administration says the accident reinforces the importance of training and safe practices.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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