Phoenix Coal Inc. Resumes production after ice storm

    LOUISVILLE, KY, Feb. 2 /CNW/ - Phoenix Coal Inc. (TSX: PHC) ("Phoenix" or
"the Company"), a leading producer and consolidator of thermal coal reserves
in the Illinois Basin, announced today that the Company has resumed production
at its mining operations after experiencing a temporary shutdown due to a
severe ice storm last week that impacted most of the State of Kentucky.
Approximately 75% of the counties in the state, including Western Kentucky,
have been in a state of emergency since last Wednesday due to power outages
and severely damaged infrastructure.
    Consequently, the Company was unable to produce coal for most of the week
because of the loss of power and inability to access its mine sites. The
Company's mobile equipment sustained no damage and is fully operational. The
preparation plant at the Briar Hill mine site sustained only minor damage, but
will require repair, taking it offline until February 15th. The Company's
mines are currently operating at reduced rates, but it is anticipated they
will be running at pre-storm capacity by February 7th. Phoenix expects that
the loss of production due to the ice storm will be approximately 85,000 tons.
    "We are pleased with our progress toward resuming production at our mine
sites and are extremely fortunate that our facilities sustained only minor
damage relative to the hardships felt by our employees and their families,
most of whom are still without heat, power and water," said David Wiley,
President and CEO of Phoenix Coal Inc. "Our employees have shown extraordinary
resilience and great effort in bringing operations safely back on line, and we
expect to return to uninterrupted work schedules and production this coming

    About Phoenix Coal Inc.

    Phoenix Coal Inc. is an integrated mining company producing high sulphur,
low chlorine, bituminous coal from the Illinois Basin. To address the
increasing demand for energy in the Eastern US, Phoenix Coal is pursuing
production growth through the focused acquisition, consolidation, and
extraction of coal assets. Phoenix Coal currently operates four surface coal
mining operations in Muhlenberg County, Kentucky and a barge loading facility
on the Green River. Development plans for additional surface operations, as
well as an underground mine, are underway. The Company's executive offices are
located in Louisville, KY and its operational headquarters are stationed in
Madisonville, KY. For more information, visit


    Certain information set forth in this press release contains
"forward-looking statements", and "forward-looking information" under
applicable securities laws. Except for statements of historical fact, certain
information contained herein constitutes forward-looking statements which
include management's assessment of Phoenix's future plans and operations and
are based on Phoenix's current internal expectations, estimates, projections,
assumptions and beliefs, which may prove to be incorrect. Some of the
forward-looking statements may be identified by words such as "expects"
"anticipates", "believes", "projects", "plans", and similar expressions. These
statements are not guarantees of future performance and undue reliance should
not be placed on them. Such forward-looking statements necessarily involve
known and unknown risks and uncertainties, which may cause Phoenix's actual
performance and financial results in future periods to differ materially from
any projections of future performance or results expressed or implied by such
forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not
limited to: liabilities inherent in coal mine development and production;
geological, mining and processing technical problems; Phoenix's inability to
obtain required mine licenses, mine permits and regulatory approvals required
in connection with mining and coal processing operations; dependence on third
party coal transportation systems; competition for, among other things,
capital, acquisitions of reserves, undeveloped lands and skilled personnel;
incorrect assessments of the value of acquisitions; changes in commodity
prices and exchange rates; changes in the regulations in respect to the use of
coal; the effects of competition and pricing pressures in the coal market; the
oversupply of, or lack of demand for, coal; currency and interest rate
fluctuations; various events which could disrupt operations and/or the
transportation of coal products, including labor stoppages and severe weather
conditions; the demand for and availability of rail, port and other
transportation services; and management's ability to anticipate and manage the
foregoing factors and risks. There can be no assurance that forward-looking
statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events
could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Phoenix
undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements if circumstances
or management's estimates or opinions should change except as required by
applicable securities laws. The reader is cautioned not to place undue
reliance on forward-looking statements.

    The TSX has neither approved nor disapproved of the contents of this
    press release.

For further information:

For further information: Joanna Longo, The Equicom Group, Investor
Relations, (416) 815-0700 ext. 233,

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