Crews complete review of Blacksville mine

CONSOL Energy mine examiners have completed a review of the entire Blacksville No.2 operation as it moves ahead with sealing efforts nearly one month after a fire stopped production.

Donna Schmidt

“The examination revealed no significant issues pertaining to safe operation of the mine,” spokeswoman Lynn Seay told ILN.

“CONSOL Energy has resumed normal pre-shift examinations as well as regular weekly airway inspections of the mine.”

Advance teams are continuing work on the construction of seals in the mine, particularly at the Kuhn Town and Ornduff portals.

Seay said water accumulation was discovered in several locations and it had received approval to power the mine’s rectifiers to dewater those areas.

“This process has been successful and the mine is safe for travel on all haulage tracks,” she said.

CONSOL, which has released neither a cause for the March 12 fire nor its specific location, said gas levels remained steady and were being monitored.

“It remains unknown when the Blacksville No. 2 mine will resume production,” Seay said.

The producer evacuated 121 miners after smoke was seen coming from the shaft of the mine in Wayne, near the Pennsylvania-West Virginia border.

No injuries were reported.

CONSOL has not made any public comment on the impact of the idle on its tonnage goals, nor whether that had been any damage to equipment or underground resources.

Blackville, which mines coal with a single longwall as well as having continuous mining sections, produced about 3 million tons last year from the prolific Pittsburgh 8 seam.