Princess Beverly (Addington)


            When you watch a blast go off from the top of Kayford Mountain, it seems like it is in the middle of nowhere. And the blasting logs note that for nearly every blast Stanley Park is the closest protected structure (usually 2,700 to 3,900 feet away). This is the cemetery and campground atop Kayford that was preserved by Larry Gibson.

            But the map shows that the southern end of the mine follows Route 1 as it winds along from Whiteseville to Dorothy to Ameagle. Nearly all the blasts take place southwest and south of Stanley Park, putting them less than a mile from Route 1.And it was the Litos brothers, George and Manuel, who kept lists of the blasts that seemed bothersome at their store along Route 1 between Colcord and Ameagle. They even filed a complaint on Sept. 16, 1999 that the blasts vibrated their windows.

            A couple dozen other complaints have been filed about the blasting. But some people didn’t know which mine was blasting, and didn’t know how to contact DEP.

            The complaint investigations were only cursory. The only significant finding by the inspector was that the Sept. 16 blast was actually two shots fired in close succession. The inspector noted this “creates more noise than normal, but would not be out of compliance according to the scaled distance formula.”

            In fact in another complaint investigation, the inspector wrote: “In the case where it is believed that blasting has caused damage, the DEP’s jurisdiction falls within one half mile of the blasting site. According to current laws and regulations, any structures outside of one half mile are not considered in danger of blast damage.”

Continue to in-depth analyses of blasting problems in nine communities:





            We examined 106 blasts, of which 57 were noticeable enough to be noted by the Litos brothers or cause a complaint.

            Again binder shots were a factor, with 19 of the 30 being problematic. As the inspector noted, sometimes two blasts went off nearly simultaneously and fairly close together. This happened 14 times, and nine caused problems. Three of the others were small blasts.

            Generally, it was the blasts with larger amounts of explosive per delay that caused problems. The closer they were to the communities (and further from Stanley Park) the more likely the larger blasts were to cause problems. For example, there was not a problem with a blast of 1,392 pounds per delay when it was 2,500 feet southwest of Stanley Park. But there was a problem when the blast was 3,200 feet southwest of the park and had 1,386 pounds per delay.

            This was one mine, though, were there was more variation in delays. Theoretically, longer and more delays will moderate the ground vibration. At this mine, longer delays did seem to make a difference in some of the blasts.

            For example, on March 8, 1999, a blast of 1,200 pounds per delay went off 3,750 feet southwest of Stanley Park. It did not cause a problem and had delays of 9 ms., 200 ms., and 600 ms. A blast that did cause problems on March 43, 1999, was located in the same area and shot 1,294 pounds per delay. It only had delays of 9 ms. and 200 ms.