On August 18, 2015 Assistant Secretary Joe Main and District 12 Manager for Coal Mine Safety & Health Tim Watkins led a delegation of officials from the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) in Washington, D.C., on a visit to the Pinnacle Mining Company LLC underground coal mine in Pineville, West Virginia. The visit was an opportunity to see some of the latest technologies to improve mine safety and health. The mine that began operating in 1969 is the home of the reigning national coal mine rescue champions and has the only longwall plow still operating in the US. The visit also provided an opportunity to meet miners at the morning shift change. Miners working at this mine are members of United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) local union 1713.
During the visit the group saw demonstrations of new technologies including:
- a Continuous Personal Dust Monitor (CPDM),
- a Coal Dust Explosibility Meter (CDEM),
- the communications and tracking system,
- a proximity detection system on a continuous mining machine and
- refuge alternatives.