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Mine Inspection 'Blitz' Nets 128 Violations At West Virginia Mines

Coal Mine

TIM HUBER   05/31/10 10:30 AM ET   AP

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — West Virginia's Office of Miners' Health Safety and Training says mine inspectors issued more than 100 citations for violations found during an inspection blitz Gov. Joe Manchin ordered.

Agency spokeswoman Leslie Fitzwater says inspectors targeted 51 problem mines immediately after Manchin ordered the inspections April 14. The remainder of West Virginia's approximately 200 underground coal mines were examined within a week.

Manchin ordered the inspections after the deaths of 29 coal miners at Massey Energy's Upper Big Branch mine – the nation's worst coal mining disaster in 40 years.

Fitzwater says state inspectors issued 128 citations during the blitz and ordered two mines closed until problems were fixed.

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