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Engineering Firm Told Utah Mining Company Of Structural Problems

HUNTINGTON, Utah (AP) - As rescuers bore a third hole in search
of six missing coal miners in Utah, there's a report the mine
operators were told of potential trouble underground several months
ago.

An engineering firm hired by the mining company revealed concern
about structural problems at the mine as early as March, when a
different underground area was damaged.

The damage led the company to abandon work in one section of the
mine.

The mine's co-owner denies the company was retreat mining at the
time of last week's collapse. But officials have said they approved
such a plan for the mine.

Retreat mining is a common but sometimes dangerous practice that
involves pulling out leftover sections and pillars of coal that
hold up the roof.

The mining company says an earthquake caused the mine collapse.


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