The first day of the event focused on first aid. The teams were given problems and had to solve them while following proper procedures. The teams were then put to the test with two days of mine rescue scenarios and tests. Teams from West Virginia, Kentucky, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Alabama participated.

“These are the best of the best. In this competition, our mine rescue teams showed how hard they work all year long. We are proud of the work they do before, during and after an emergency,” said Perry Whitley, Alpha’s director, mine emergency and preparedness.

These are the results for Alpha affiliated mine rescue teams:

  • Southern West Virginia Team #2 with Mark Bolen as captain won the West Virginia State Championship and took 1st overall;
  • Rockspring Gold Team with Dennis Horn as captain placed 1st on day two of the mine rescue contest and took 2nd place overall and 2nd place in the state of West Virginia;
  • Cumberland Coal Resources, LP, Cumberland RD team with Robert Drzazgowki and Jason Layhue as captains, finished 2nd for the combination team in first aid and mine rescue;
  • Cumberland Coal Resources, LP, Cumberland JC team with John Chambers as captain, won 1st place on the first day of the mine rescue contest;
  • Jeremy McClung with Brooks Run North took home 3rd place in Bench in the state of West Virginia; and
  • Rob Hutchinson with the Cumberland Coal Resources, LP, Cumberland RD team placed 3rd overall in Bench.

Mine rescue teams are required to complete 96 hours of training annually, but the mine rescue teams sponsored by Alpha’s affiliates consistently exceed that requirement every year.