Alpha subsidiary idles VA mine, lays off workers

THE confirmed idle of operations at the Laurel Mountain mine in Russell County, Virginia, has left 41 workers without a job.

Staff Reporter

The metallurgical coal mine is operated by Alpha Natural Resources subsidiary Dickenson-Russell Coal, which will keep 51 workers on the job temporarily to remove equipment from the mine.

Alpha spokesman Ted Pile told Mineweb that the Laurel Mountain mine couldn’t remain profitable.

The cost of mining at Laurel Mountain was “unsustainable relative to the market price” for coal, Pile said in an email.

The move is “a continuation of adjusting our mining assets to the realities of the marketplace”, he added.

The mine produced 278,071 tons of coal in 2012, according to data from the US Mine Safety and Health Administration.

The mine was officially idled on September 4, Pile said.

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