The dangers of coal - Roadside Stories

A Manatū Taonga audio guide to the West Coast coal industry

Check out the Ministry for Culture and Heritage's audio guide to West Coast coal in the Video tab.

West Coast coal has been mined since the 1860s, and coal was a vital source of energy in the 19th century. But coal mining is back-breaking work that can also be dangerous – 65 men died in the 1896 Brunner mine explosion, New Zealand’s worst industrial disaster. In 2010, 29 workers died after an explosion at the Pike River coal mine.

Coal and coal mining
Brunner mine disaster, 1896
Grey coal towns
West Coast region: mining

Archival audio sourced from Radio New Zealand Sound Archives. Sound files may not be reused without permission from Radio New Zealand Sound Archives (Reference number CDR742, Spectrum 865).

Roadside Stories is a series of audio guides that follow major road trips in New Zealand. The stories cover the places you’ll pass along the way – their people, their history, their cultural and natural significance. For more information about Roadside Stories visit http://www.mch.govt.nz/roadside/

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