The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) removed Stephen Gigliotti from an internal review team on Thursday which was investigating the government actions prior to the April explosion at a Massey Energy Co. mine in West Virginia.
The MSHA is the federal enforcement agency responsible for the health and safety of the nation's miners
Stephen Gigliotti was removed by the MSHA internal review team as he was previously the Acting District Manager for District 4 and there could be a potential conflict of interest. The agency's District 4 covers southern West Virginia, including Raleigh County, where Massey's Upper Big Branch Mine is located.
The explosion killed 29 miners and the accident is also being investigated by the West Virginia Office of Miner Health, Safety and Training.
In addition West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin has also appointed Davitt McAteer a mine safety expert to investigate the explosion. Federal prosecutors are conducting a criminal probe into the explosion.