UK Coal said it was expected the equipment installation would resolve the impact of tough conditions. The new face start-up is now expected at the end of February, instead of January as originally planned.
The company said mitigating action, including reducing operating costs and extracting additional tonnage off the existing production face in the first several weeks of the new year, was being taken to reduce the impact of the Daw Mill face gap on working capital.
At Kellingley, the new Beeston seam is expected to be ready to directly take over from the current production face around late February.
At Thoresby, the Deep Soft project remains on schedule for start of production in the new seam in March, following record-breaking development drivage in 2009.
Production-wise, 2009 fell at the bottom end of guidance released in November last year, with UK Coal expecting deep mines production of around 5.7 million tonnes. Surface mines output is expected to be 1.4Mt.
In executive news, UK Coal has appointed Gareth Williams as mining director with a place on the board.
Williams has more than 20 years experience in coal mining in a range of international roles with Anglo Coal.
Having been general manager of some of Anglo's largest coal mines, he is currently head of operational performance for Anglo Coal Canada and South America.
Williams will join the company next month.