PITTSBURGH, May 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- CONSOL Energy Inc. (NYSE: CNX) today received approval from MSHA and state agencies of its plan to resume mining operations at the Blacksville No. 2 Mine, which was evacuated on March 12 when smoke was detected exiting the Orndoff shaft. CONSOL Energy expects full operations to begin with the morning shift on May 20.
On May 14, the twenty-one seals constructed by CONSOL Energy's advance teams at the KuhnTown and Orndoff locations of the Blacksville No. 2 mine were determined to be cured to the strength required by the approved construction plan. Today, consistent with our core values of safety and compliance, CONSOL Energy is conducting proactive safety and compliance training for all Blacksville No. 2 employees in anticipation of the May 20 restart date. We believe this training is necessary to update our employees on the changes in the mine and the ventilation plan.
"The dedication and collaborative efforts of mine management, federal and state agencies, contractors/vendors, and our employees on site who worked around-the-clock to safely extinguish the fire and seal that location in the mine are to be commended," stated CONSOL Energy Chief Operating Officer of Coal Operations Jimmy Brock. "On behalf of all CONSOL Energy employees, we want to acknowledge and send a special thank you to all those mine rescue team members who worked safely and compliantly to get the Blacksville No. 2 mine back in operation. We would not be in this position without their tireless efforts. They accomplished our goal of restoring the Blacksville No. 2 mine back to safe operating condition in a remarkably short period of time."Blacksville No. 2 Mine produces approximately 400,000 tons of coal per month under normal operations.