Joe P. Asher
After an investigation concluded by the Office of Mine Safety and Licensing on Thursday, K & D Mining, of Evarts, is facing more violations.
Public Information Officer for the Office of Mine Safety and Licensing Linda Potter confirmed a team consisting of a chief investigator and three additional inspectors were on-site Monday through Wednesday and part of the day on Thursday conducting a thorough investigation of the mine site and equipment. Several violations were written due to the OMSL investigation.
According to Potter, “The OMSL investigators and inspection team issued 37 violations, of which 22 were closures. The closures involved equipment, as well as areas of the mine that were deemed unsafe.”
Potter said a closure is a violation serious enough to result in the immediate closing of a section of a mine or the immediate shutdown of equipment until such violations are corrected.
With the investigation phase complete, the process moves on to the next step.
“The investigative findings have been given to our legal staff and will be reviewed for referral to the Mine Safety Review Commission,” said Potter. “Actions may involve civil penalties as well as disciplinary actions against individuals responsible for the safety violations.”
Potter pointed out that “the actions of the Mine Safety Review Commission are appealable.”
“An appeal of an order of the commission must be filed in the Franklin Circuit Court within 30 days of entry of the order according to KRS 351.194 (8). Further appeals can be made to the Kentucky Court of Appeals and then to the Kentucky Supreme Court,” explained Potter.
According to previous reports in the Louisville Courier-Journal, K & D Mining was issued 43 citations as a result of a May 16th surprise safety inspection by federal authorities. That inspection resulted in the mine being shut down for nine days. K & D Mine #17 is operated by Ralph Napier, John D. North and Jack H. Ealy. Napier and North were the operators of Kentucky Darby Mine #1, where an explosion killed five miners in 2006.
K & D Mining could not be reached for comment.
Reach Joe P. Asher at 606-573-4510 or firstname.lastname@example.org