On Capitol Hill, three Democratic congressmen have proposed another broad mine safety law.
The legislation introduced on June 19, 2007, they would ban the use of so-called belt air ventilation and force other changes.
A belt air ban has been long sought by the United Mine Workers. The union considers the practice of pumping fresh air underground, through the same shafts that contain conveyer belts, carrying coal to the surface unsafe.
The legislation builds on sweeping safety laws passed last year after West Virginia’s Sago and Aracoma mine accidents and Kentucky’s Darby disaster.