The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit has refused to throw out a final order that the Federal Mine Safety and Health Review Commission had issued against Mach Mining LLC.
A three-judge panel for the D.C. Circuit returned its decision Jan. 12 after hearing oral arguments Oct. 14.
Mach operates a longwall coal mine in Johnston City, Illinois, that releases more than 1 million cubic feet of methane daily. The Secretary of Labor proposed civil penalties for a series of citations that had been issued at the mine.
The commission had concluded that two of Mach’s regulatory violations issued by the U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) were the result of “high negligence” and one violation was also “significant and substantial.”
Mach contends these determinations were unwarranted in view of its efforts to mitigate the violations and the limited danger they posed. “Because the factual findings underlying these determinations are supported by substantial evidence, we deny the petition,” the D.C. Circuit held.
The case, Mach Mining versus Secretary of Labor is Docket No. 14-1266.