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Patriot cuts production, jobs at three mining complexes

By From staff reports

Patriot Coal Corp. said it is temporarily curtailing production at three southern West Virginia complexes over the next 60 days, impacting 250 jobs.

The company said on Friday it will reduce production of metallurgical coal, used in steelmaking, by about 85,000 tons a month in response to further weakening of the market.

Employees and contractors at the company's Kanawha Eagle mining complex on the Kanawha-Boone County border and the Rocklick and Wells mining complexes in Boone County will be affected, Patriot said.

Ben Hatfield, Patriot's president and chief operating officer, said, "Metallurgical coal demand and pricing declined rapidly over the last two months as a result of slowdowns in economies around the world. These actions are designed to bring our production in line with expected sales and focus capital resources on our lowest-cost operations as we proceed with our reorganization."

St. Louis-based Patriot filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on July 9. The cutbacks are the latest in a series of reductions announced in recent months.


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