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Petition - Docket No. M-96-124-C

In the matter of
Consol Pennsylvania Coal Company
Enlow Fork Mine
I.D. No. 36-07416
Docket No. M-96-124-C

Date Issued: 05-29-1997


On September 23, 1996, Consol Pennsylvania Coal Company filed a petition pursuant to 101(c) of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 (Mine Act), 30 U.S.C. sec. 811(c), and 30 CFR 44 et seq., for the modification of the application of 30 CFR 75.313(c)(1), a mandatory safety standard. Section 30 CFR 75.313(c)(1) provides: "If ventilation is not restored within 15 minutes after a main mine fan stops - (1) everyone one shall be withdrawn from the mine."

On June 7, 1996, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Ciruit issued an order staying implementation of 30 CFR 75.313(d)(2), pending the outcome of litigation currenlty before the Court. Section 75.313(d)(2) addrssed miners remaining underground follwing the restoration of ventilation before miners reached the surface. The result of the Court's order is that, until the matter is finally resolved by the Court, 75.313(c)(1) is given full effect. Accordingly, in the event of a main mine fan stoppage of 15 minutes or more, all persons must be withdrawn to the surface.

The Agency believes that in light of the litigation pending before the Court, it would be inappropriate for the Agency to consider modification of 75.313(c)(1). Accordingly, the subject petition is dismissed without prejudice to refile once the current litigation is resolved.

Pursuant to the authority delegated by the Secretary of Labor to the Administrator for Coal Mine Safety and Health, Consol Pennsylvania Coal Company's Petition for Modification of 30 CFR 75.313(c)(1) to its Enlow Fork Mine is dismissed without prejudice.

Any party to this action desiring a hearing on this matter must file in accordance with 30 CFR 44 within 30 days. The request for hearing must be filed with the Administrator for Coal Mine Safety and Health, 4015 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, Virginia 22203.

If a hearing is requested, the request shall contain a concise summary of position on the issues of fact or law desired to be raised by the party requesting the hearing, including specific objections to the proposed decision. A party other than Petitioner who has requested a hearing shall also comment upon all issues of fact or law presented in the petition, and any party to this action requesting a hearing may indicate a desired hearing site. If no request for a hearing is filed within 30 days after service thereof, the Order of Dismissal will become final.


Robert A. Elam
Deputy Administrator for Coal Mine Safety and Health