11 Sep 2013
Bankrupt US coal miner Patriot Coal on Tuesday announced plans to idle its Logan County complex located near Man, West Virginia, which would reduce the company’s yearly thermal coal production by about two million tons.
The company said it had given affected employees 60-day notice in compliance with the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act.
The operations to be idled included the Guyan surface mine and the Fanco preparation plant and rail loadout – with a total of about 250 employees being impacted.
Patriot said it would place some 50 employees into open positions at other Patriot subsidiary operations.
“This is an unfortunate but necessary step to align Patriot's production with expected sales. Despite the substantial progress being made in the Patriot reorganisation, we still have to contend with the industry-wide challenge of coal prices that have fallen well below production costs at many Central Appalachian mines.
“Thermal coal markets are extremely weak due to low natural gas prices and costly regulatory changes that have reduced coal-fuelled electricity generation capacity,” president and CEO Bennett Hatfield said.