SOMERSET, Colo. (AP) - U.S. Sen. Mark Udall is asking the U.S. Department of Commerce to help coal miners displaced by the idling of Elk Creek Mine, which was shut down Dec. 2 after a mine fire.
Udall says the shutdown will affect Gunnison and Delta counties after more than 250 workers were laid off.
According to the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel, the government has not yet responded to the request.
Oxbow Mining LLC, which opened the mine in 2001, plans to keep about 20 people to maintain the mine and prepare for future operations.
The mine produced more than 6 million tons of low-sulfur coal and employed 350 people at its peak in 2008.