120 Petersburg miners released after sale to Sunrise Coal - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

120 Petersburg miners released after sale to Sunrise Coal

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On August 22 there was a change in ownership, from Vectren to Sunrise Coal, of Five Star Mining in Petersburg and two mines operated by Black Panther Mining in Oaktown.

On Friday we went to the Five Star Mine in Petersburg where 120 miners had their last day of work.

We ran across one former employee of the mine, Andrew Collins.

He has a new job and was actually stopping by to find names of other miners who might be looking for work.

Collins says when the deal was first in the works and they were all told they would be able to keep their jobs. 

He says that didn't happen and some long time workers were let go. 

"From the get go, it was drug screenings and background checks that was promised if everything checked out, and come about they all lied and it was nothing like that from the beginning," says Collins. "They got rid of a bunch of good people for no reason."

We haven't been able to reach representatives with Sunrise Coal but Vectren officials told us last week that 670 employees did keep their jobs.

They also said the miners who were let go had the option to leave the mines one week ago so they could look for new jobs. We're told they were paid for that week.

Suzanne Jaworowski, Communication Director with Sunrise Coal, released the following statement:

"In the acquisition of Vectren Fuels, Sunrise Coal has offered over 680 jobs to existing employees. The job fairs were exclusively for existing employees. Unfortunately in the transition there were job loses. These decisions are very difficult. Sunrise Coal is dedicated to safety & productivity and will always make decisions based on those goals."

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Approximately 120 miners released during sale transition

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