Alpha's award run

SEVERAL Alpha Natural Resources operations have earned state and national recognition for safety performance lately, including two prestigious Sentinels of Safety awards from the National Mining Association.

Donna Schmidt

For the second time each, Alpha’s Dickenson-Russell Coal Roaring Fork No. 4 operation won a sentinel of safety honour in the small underground coal category and Omar Mining's Chesterfield prep plant won in the small coal processing facility category.

A pair of underground safety awards was also recently presented by the Kentucky Office of Mine Safety and Licensing and the Kentucky Coal Association to Enterprise Mining Company's 9A mine.

Its recognition was for having the best safety record in the Hazard District.

Sidney Coal Company's M-3 Energy Mining's Mine No. 1 was also selected by the groups for having the best record in the Pikeville District of Kentucky.

Sidney Coal Company's Pegs Branch surface nine earned a 2013 excellence in reclamation award from the Kentucky Department for Natural Resources and the Kentucky Coal Association for successfully establishing a beneficial post-mining land use of fish and wildlife habitat.

Finally, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health handed down a mine safety and health technology innovations award, a recognition given to companies improving mine worker safety and health through technological innovation.

Alpha, in partnership with Matrix Design Group, earned the award for its next-generation atmospheric monitoring sensors that have the ability to detect air velocity, low-power methane and carbon monoxide.

The sensors are commercially available and have improved detection of potentially harmful developments in the mine's ventilation network.

A 24-hour battery backup also provides enhanced functionality.

“These awards are examples of how our people live Alpha's commitment to Running Right by continually focusing on safety, striving for improvement and operating in an environmentally responsible manner,” Alpha president Paul Vining said.

“Safety is Alpha's first priority and embedded throughout our culture, which is why we are proud to celebrate these accomplishments.”