Mapping nearly complete at UBB disaster zone

FIVE months after the Upper Big Branch explosion which claimed 29 lives, the Mine Safety and Health Administration has completed most of the mapping at the mine and conducted 229 interviews.
Mapping nearly complete at UBB disaster zone Mapping nearly complete at UBB disaster zone Mapping nearly complete at UBB disaster zone Mapping nearly complete at UBB disaster zone Mapping nearly complete at UBB disaster zone

 

Blair Price

Only the face areas of Headgate 22 and Tailgate 22 are yet to be mapped.

MSHA said pumps and discharge lines are still pumping water from HG21, HG22 and TG22.

The safety authority said the water was continuing to recede last week, but this has been challenged by mine operator Massey Energy.

Massey reported flood levels were actually rising, and a pump will not be installed on to HG22 until this week.

MSHA noted that no additional methane detectors were found on the longwall face, and the second longwall remote control is yet to be found.

“Mapping teams are retracing areas that have already been mapped to search for additional evidence and to confirm location of stoppings to try and determine the ventilation prior to the explosion,” MSHA said.

Testing of the longwall tail drive methane sensor uncovered is continuing.

MSHA also issued an imminent danger order for the outby area of UBB, triggered by the observation of bad roof conditions in the Old 4 Section Right.

MSHA said the order was modified to allow the installation of ventilation controls to make the area safer for investigation teams.

MSHA is also reviewing a mine ventilation plan revision submitted by Massey.

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