The new office, in its formative stages, eventually will be located in Pineville but for now is temporarily housed at the National Mine Health and Safety Academy in Beaver. It will have jurisdiction over field offices in Pineville, Logan and Princeton. District 4 will remain in Mt. Hope and will oversee field offices in Mt. Hope, Mt. Carbon, Madison and Summersville.

Over the past several years, MSHA had focused significant additional resources on District 4 in order to keep up with industry expansion and meet requirements and expectations since passage of the Mine Improvement and Emergency Response Act in 2006, including new administration initiatives designed to strengthen health and safety protections for the nation’s miners. The agency had attempted to address increasing activity in District 4 by hiring additional personnel, making overtime available and allocating personnel from other districts to complete mandated inspections.

Timothy Watkins, formerly an assistant district manager in Pikeville, Ky., and a mining engineer, has been selected as the new District 12 manager. His staff eventually will be structured like that of other coal district offices. Charles Carpenter recently was selected as manager of District 4.