MAC: Mines and Communities

Massey Indicted

Published by MAC on 2006-06-26

Massey Indicted

CHARLESTON, West Virginia, (ENS)

26th June 2006

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection today issued notices of violation to coal companies in three counties after torrential rain caused landslides, washouts and flooding that closed roads and and contaminated waterways.

One notice of violation was issued to Aracoma Coal Company, a Massey Energy operation, after a mud slide today entirely blocked Route 17 and most of Dingess Run near Ethel in Logan County.

Aracoma Coal has had crews on the scene since noon working to clear the road and the stream. No injuries were reported, says Lalena Price, spokesperson with the Department of Environmental Protection.

Heavy rain has caused a sediment pond to brim over and wash material and muddy water into the Birch River in Nicholas County. ICG Coal Company crews were nearing the completion of reclaiming a valley fill between Boggs and Big Ditch Lake when the washout occurred Sunday.

Price says an imminent harm cessation order has been issued to the company.

In Mingo County, a blackwater spill that began on Sunday was exacerbated by heavy rains today causing further discoloration of Pigeon Creek. The spill occurred while employees of Delbarton Mining, a Massey Energy operation, constructed an under drain for a refuse area.

An imminent harm cessation order has been issued to the company.

Heavy rains caused major flooding Sunday in Pennsylvania, Delaware and along Maryland's Eastern Shore, washing out roads and forcing some residents to evacuate their homes. No deaths or injuries were reported.

In Maryland, four to five feet of water was reported in parts of northern Dorchester and southern Caroline County, state Emergency Management Agency spokesman Jeff Welsh said. At least 20 roads in Dorchester County were closed, and a large section of Route 307 was washed out down to the gravel, said the Maryland State Police.

Low-laying areas of Federalsburg, a southern Caroline County town of about 2,600 people, were flooded Sunday morning and about 45 people voluntarily evacuated, Police Chief Donald Nagel said. A state of emergency was declared in the city. In the southwest Delaware town of Seaford, cars were floating in a Wal-Mart parking lot. Up to 15 people were evacuated from their homes, city spokeswoman Amy Walls said.

In western Pennsylvania, flash floods triggered by heavy rainfall prompted a state of emergency in parts of Armstrong County.

The basements of 100 to 200 homes in Ford City and nearby areas were flooded and some residents had to be evacuated, said Randy Brozenick, director of the county's public safety department.

Rain over the mid-Atlantic states is expected to continue due to Atlantic moisture being swept inland by a disturbance that has swirled from the Bahamas into Florida and Georgia plus a stalled front over the Appalachians.

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