Community welcomes back Lucky Friday miners

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by Associated Press & KREM.com

KREM.com

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 7:30 PM

Updated Tuesday, Feb 19 at 7:42 PM

MULLAN, Idaho  -- The Lucky Friday Mine has reopened after three accidents that killed two miners and injured seven others prompted a yearlong closure.

Officials with Hecla Mining Company announced Tuesday that rehabilitation work on the Silver Shaft at the mine is complete, the company has been given clearance from the Mine Safety and Health Administration and mining is once again under way.

More than 100 miners were put out of work when the MSHA ordered the mine closed for safety improvements in January 2012. The order came after a string of accidents: In 2011, a cave-in killed a miner in April, another died that November attempting to dislodge rock, and a rock burst injured seven miners in December 2011.

The mine is expected to produce two million ounces of silver this year.

Business owners and workers said they are ready to welcome back the miners who left the town when the mine closed.

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