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Federal surprise inspections close Kentucky mine

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 28, 2013 at 2:39 pm •  Published: February 28, 2013

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Federal officials say a round of surprise mine inspections in January led to the closure of an eastern Kentucky underground mine because of dozens of safety violations.

The Mine Safety and Health Administration sent inspectors to Rain Coal Company's No. 1 Mine on Jan. 15 after an anonymous complaint. Officials issued 54 citations and five orders that shut the Floyd County mine down for more than a week. MSHA inspectors said Rain Coal failed to comply with a ventilation plan to control dust that could potentially cause an ignition.

Rain Coal says the mine was no longer producing coal as of Feb. 11.

MSHA says it issued 245 citations and 13 orders in January at mines in Kentucky, West Virginia and seven other states.