Watch CBS News

Investigation Underway Into Coal Slide At Plant That Killed 2 In Pueblo

PUEBLO, Colo. (CBS4) - The investigation into a slide that killed two workers Thursday at a coal-fired electricity generating plant in Pueblo is underway. Rescuers found the bodies of the two men buried beneath about 60 feet of coal at the Comanche Generating Station.

The slide happened on an 80-foot-high coal pile.

COAL PLANT RESCUE 6VO.transfer_frame_81
(credit: CBS)

Witnesses said the workers were standing about 30 feet up a slope of the pile when the slide occurred Thursday morning. Rescuers found the bodies about 6 hours later.

The victims are described as a man in his 20s and another in his 30s. The names of the victims were withheld until relatives could be notified.

Pueblo Coal Plant Rescue 1 (KKTV tweet)
The Comanche Generating Station on the southeast side of Pueblo. (credit: KKTV/Twitter)

Witnesses reported that the accident happened on a feeder pile for the station's coal-fired power plant, which is Colorado's largest and is operated by Xcel Energy.

Xcel spokeswoman Lacey Nygard said the workers are employed by Savage, a Salt Lake City-based firm contracted by Xcel to operate and maintain the coal yard at Comanche and at other Xcel coal plants.

Xcel Energy released this statement, "Our hearts go out to the families of the two employees of Savage who died in the incident yesterday. We are working with Savage and local authorities to understand what happened. Savage has served as a long-term contractor partner that operates and maintains the coal yard at Comanche and our other coal plants. Savage manages all of the onsite operations; hiring, training and maintaining staff and equipment and coal operations at the Comanche plant coal yard. Any requests for information regarding the incident and these two individuals should be directed to Savage."

Xcel is working with Savage and the Pueblo County Sheriff's Office to determine the cause of the accident.

EMERGENCY COMPONENT - LOCAL

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.