Planning underway for 2015 Bluefield Coal Show - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Planning underway for 2015 Bluefield Coal Show

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BLUEFIELD (WVVA) - -

The 2013 Bluefield Coal Show is over.

As hundreds of vendors showcased the latest products to mine coal, in the back of many minds looms a scary question...What does the future hold for the coal industry?

Tom Henegar owns West Virginia Electrical Repair. He says 95% of his business is dependent on the coal industry, so he came to the Bluefield Coal Show to drum up business because he says hard times in the coal industry is impacting his bottom line.

"Our business is probably down 40% than what it was and this area is driven by the coal industry. It's sad it's effected this area so bad," said Henegar.

Coal show organizers estimate 7,000 attended the event over the three day period, also hoping for a boost in business.

"Our customers don't have money to spend. They are not going to make capital investments to buy new equipment or re-manufactured equipment until they can understand truly what is going to happen with coal," said Cliff McKinney, a sales representative for Phillips Machines in Beckley.

Meanwhile, Tom and his 15 employees will take it a day at time, wondering if better times are around the corner.

"You worry a lot about yourself and especially your employees and their family. You hope to see a pickup so we can all have jobs and make income," says Henegar.

Planning is already underway for the next Bluefield Coal Show.

It will take place September 16-18, 2015.

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