100th anniversary of Coal Creek Disaster

The 100th anniversary of the fatal Coal Creek mine disaster will be recognized in Fernie this weekend.

A bronze plaque has been added to the Miners Walk at City Hall.

Ken Novakowski with the BC Labour Heritage Centre says 34 lives were lost in the 1917 incident.

“They were a number out of hundreds that actually died in that whole region over a number of years in the coal mining industry,” Novakowski says.”

He adds this is part of their effort to commemorate defining events in labour history.

“Its intended to raise the awareness of people that workers like miners and others have often sacrificed their lives to make a living and that was all part of working in British Columbia and trying to build this province into the province that it is today,” Novakowski says.

An explosion also happened at the Coal Creek mine 15 years earlier in 1902, killing 128 people.