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EASTERN ASSOCIATED: TWO GUARDS SHOT BY PELLET GUNS; STRIKE VIOLENCE ESCALATION AT EASTERN ASSOCIATED BLAMED ON TRUMKA

 CHARLESTON, W.Va., Sept. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- Strike-related violence at Eastern Associated Coal Corp. mines took an ugly turn last night and Eastern Associated officials today placed the blame squarely at the feet of United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) President Richard Trumka.
 Eastern Associated reported six separate incidents of strike-related violence and misconduct at various mines throughout UMWA District 17 last night and early this morning "in blatant violation of a federal district court order signed last week by Judge Dennis R. Knapp," according to Eastern Associated spokesperson Terry Whitt.
 "UMWA-sanctioned violence has been a trademark of this union since its inception," said Whitt, "Trumka cannot wash his hands and refuse responsibility for these lawless acts. He cannot on one hand say the union is opposed to violence while on the other hand telling the rank and file `that coal operators will not run one pound of coal during the strike with salaried personnel' as he told miners at a rally in Danville on Sept. 3."
 Whitt said that a security guard at the Wells complex in Boone County, W.Va., was shot two times at 3:30 a.m., by what state police believe was a pellet gun. The security guard was making a routine security check of the property when the incident occurred.
 The guard, who was shot once in the chest and once in the left side of the abdomen, was treated at the scene and released.
 A second security guard at the Wells complex was shot in the back of the neck by a pellet gun early this morning while inspecting damage to the guard shack caused by shots from a high-powered rifle during the night, the spokesman said. The pellet left a welt on the back of the head of the security guard, who was treated at the scene and released, the spokesman said.
 Other incidents of strike-related violence and misconduct include:
 -- A cinder block dropped from an overhead railroad trestle smashed the rear window of a company pickup truck at the Colony Bay Mine in Boone County. The driver of the truck received lacerations from the broken glass of the windshield.
 -- A bulk oil truck attempting to make a delivery to the Colony Bay Mine last night was threatened by approximately 20 striking pickets and forced to turn away.
 -- Approximately 15 pickets set up road blocks and prevented salaried personnel at the Big Mountain No. 16 mine in Boone County from leaving the mine last night for nearly two hours until the West Virginia State Police forced the miners to step aside. Five Mack trucks were also vandalized when hydraulic lines were drained.
 -- Salaried personnel were blocked for two hours at the Montcoal No. 7 mine in Boone County last night before state police responded and striking pickets left the scene.
 Whitt said that frustrated pickets are "more than likely reacting to Trumka's double-talk on strike violence during his bus tour through West Virginia last week" and accused the union president of making a "back-handed endorsement of violent behavior on the picket line.
 "This type of illegal and violent behavior has no place in this or any other labor dispute," said Whitt.
 -0- 9/9/93
 /CONTACT: Terry Whitt or Mike Herron of Eastern Associated Coal, 304-340-1710/


CO: Eastern Associated Coal Corp.; United Mine Workers of America ST: West Virginia IN: MNG SU:

CD-JT -- PG008 -- 0502 09/09/93 17:09 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 9, 1993
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