Foresight Energy LP on Thursday confirmed the existence of a fire at its Deer Run mine in Hillsboro, Ill., after detecting high carbon monoxide levels earlier this week.
The St. Louis-based coal company controlled by Chris Cline said it discovered the high carbon monoxide levels on Tuesday, indicating the presence of a fire. Its underground employees were evacuated and there were no injuries, Foresight said in a statement.
Foresight is working with federal and state officials to contain the fire and is pumping water into two holes drilled into the mine to contain the fire, it said in a statement. No one from the company could be reached, and it was unclear how long the mine would be closed.
The mine is located near Hillsboro, about 65 miles northeast of downtown St. Louis. It produced 4.8 million tons of coal last year. Foresight raised $350 million in an initial public offering last month.
On Monday, FELP came out with an updated press release about the weekend efforts to put the fire out, saying they weren't sure yet if the fire was out or not, or the extent of any damages. It would be nice if they remembered they are a public company, and update people on the status of the mine. I can only assume they still don't know, which is worrisome.
Thank you, Foresight, for the update. I know absolutely nothing about the actual process of coal mining, and fighting underground fires. I guess it takes a while, and now they will have to figure out when mining can continue.