35th Governor’s Cup Mine Rescue and Safety Competition winner is Wellmore Coal Company.

Alden Resources Placed Second in Mine Rescue Competition


Wise, VA – The Metallurgical Coal Producers and Virginia Department of Energy co-sponsored the 35th annual Governor’s Cup Mine Rescue Contest

on the campus of University of Virginia’s College at Wise, Va. The event was held Wednesday, June 1st and Thursday, June 2nd, 2022.


First place winner was Wellmore Coal Company, Grundy, Va. at the annual Virginia Governor’s Cup Mine Rescue and Safety Contest. Second place was Alden Resources, Corbin, Ky.


The mine rescue teams competed to conduct rescue and recovery operations in a staged mine disaster scenario laid out in the university’s David J. Prior Convocation Center. Team members dress in full mine rescue gear, including oxygen breathing apparatus, to determine underground mine conditions, construct ventilation controls and locate and extract accident “victims”.

These competitions allow teams to practice their training and skills should an accident happen, and they be called to respond to an underground emergency. They are presented with a problem to use their abilities and preparation to find and correct the issue and respond to threats that could endanger the team or trapped miners.

“While this is a friendly competition, it is crucial to honing the skills of our very important and unique mine rescue teams,” said Virginia Energy Director of Coal Programs Randy Moore. “These teams are our first responders to underground coal mining emergencies, and we want to make sure they are prepared to respond and help coal miners that may find themselves in harm’s way.”

Individual coal miners also competed in the bench and preshift competitions. The preshift competition is designed for mine foreman and judges their ability to identify and rid the coal mine of any problems. The foreman does this check before the beginning of each shift to ensure the safety of their crews.

The bench competition has miners looking for problems in the breathing gear their team uses. Competitors need to quickly identify discrepancies that could put their teammates at risk if it causes the pack to not properly function.

Winners of the 35th Virginia Governor’s Cup Mine Rescue and Safety Competition included:

Virginia Governor’s Cup Winner: Wellmore Coal Company

2nd Place Team: Alden Resources

Bench 1st Place: BG4: Casey Mooneyhan, Alpha Metallurgical Resources, Paramont Contura team

Bench 2nd Place: BG4: Robby Middleton, Alpha Metallurgical Resources, Paramont Contura team

Preshift 1st Place: Joey Sykes, Alpha Metallurgical Resources, Paramont Contura team

Preshift 2nd Place: Frankie Moore, Alpha Metallurgical Resources, Paramont Contura team

Virginia Governor’s Cup Teams: Alden Resources, Coronado Buchanan Minerals Black Team, Coronado Buchanan Minerals Black Team, Alpha Met Resources Paramont Contura team, Virginia Small Operators Mine Rescue and Wellmore Coal Company. Attached photo: Pictured (L to R): Shannon Sutherland, Barbara Altizer with the Metallurgical Coal Producers Association, Caleb Scheoff, Anthony Lester, Shannon Moore, Brandon Rasnick, Will Altizer, Ricky Allen, Jordan Curry and Randy Moore with Virginia Energy.


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