The first was issued to Consol Energy’s McElroy operation in Marshall County, West Virginia. The US Mine Safety and Health Administration classified the July 20 order as a methane accumulation.
In response, the operation withdrew all personnel from the affected areas of the mine. Air volumes were then increased, bringing the methane content levels back into acceptable range and terminating the order within two hours.
Also on July 20, James River Coal’s McCoy Elkhorn mine in Pike and Floyd counties, Kentucky, received an imminent danger order after a plant operator was witnessed atop a preparation plant machine that was energized and not locked or tagged out.
The producer removed the individual from the machine, and following the worker’s training on the issue the order was terminated.
Both companies released the details of the reports in US Securities and Exchange Commission filings late last week. Neither released any further public statement on their respective events.
Imminent danger orders are issued by MSHA under section 107(a) of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act, also known as the Mine Act.
Section 1503 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street and Consumer Protection Act, amended last July, now requires disclosure of all imminent danger incidents as part of new reporting requirements regarding mine safety.
Consol’s McElroy operation in northern West Virginia operates a longwall as well as continuous miners, extracting from the Pittsburgh 8 seam. It produced 10.1 million tons of steam coal last year.
The room and pillar mines of the McCoy Elkhorn complex extract from the Williamson, Elkhorn 2, Elkhorn 3, Fireclay and Pond Creek seams.