History of the Frenštát Mine

  • 1945 – Exploration commences in southern parts of the OKD mining district
  • 1958 – First bore struck in the Karviná complex of strata
  • 1976 – The government decides on construction of a mine
  • 1981 – Frenštát Mine construction commences
  • 1982 – Pit-head No. 4, mining activities commence at Frenštát Mine
  • 1983 – Pit-head No. 5
  • 1984 – Excavation at pit No. 4 commences, 8.5 metres in diameter
  • 1985 – Excavation at pit No. 5 commences
  • 1989 – Demarcation of the mining area by decision of the former Federal Ministry of Industry and Energy
  • 1990 – The bottom of pit No. 5 reaches a depth of 1,088 metres
  • 1991 – More than 60 bores completed inside the mining area; one bore per 1 km2; end of construction, consideration of mine’s future begins
  • 1994 – Completion of pit No. 4 to a final depth of 903 metres
  • 1995 – Preservation mode commences at the colliery, continues to date
  • 2010 – OKD spends approximately CZK 60 million annually to maintain the preservation mode at the colliery, with the help of 40 employees


Exploratory bores from the surface, drilled mainly at the end of 1960s and the beginning of the 1970s proved the presence of an extensive Karviná complex of strata in the Frenštát location. The results acquired from the bores led to the decision in 1979 to continue exploration by means of mine works.

Colliery construction

The Frenštát colliery was originally intended to comprise a group of mines, with five plants – West, North, East, Trojanovice and Kunčice. The name “Frenštát” was taken from the original name of the local coal deposit discovered by the geological survey.

Excavations of pit No. 4 commenced in 1982 at the future plant Frenštát-West. The pit was damaged during the excavations and required reinforcements.

Excavations of pit No. 5 started at the same site in March 1983. It was completed uneventfully and reached the depth of 1,088 metres. Both pits were connected by a shaft at the level of 590 metres. The first coal was excavated from pit No. 5 on 12 April 1988 at the depth of 885 metres, where the first coal seam, seam No. 36 of the Karviná complex, was opened, at 3.1 metres thick.

Pursuant to the decision of the former Federal Ministry of Industry and Energy of 30 June 1989, the mining area for the deposit was allocated. The valid legislation then granted the affected parishes only minimal possibilities to influence mining activities. In contrast, the current law enables the local administration, authorities and citizens to express their positions on the intentions of mining companies.

The Frenštát Mine was never opened for mining.

Preservation mode

The mining industry in Ostrava passed through a period of decline between the 1980s and 1990s. Numerous unprofitable mines were closed at the time. This situation affected the most recent mine in the region as well. In 1991, the exploratory bores were still under construction around Frenštát; however, works had already been terminated on the colliery itself.

Pit No. 4 was completed in 1994. At the end of the same year, all mining works in Frenštát ceased when the District Mining Authority in Ostrava issued a resolution permitting preservation of mine works at the Frenštát Mine until 31 December 2003, commencing a “preservation mode”, which primarily constitutes the drai nage of mine water, ventilation and performing control checks on the mine.

In 2003, the same authority extended the preservation mode indefinitely.

Current condition

The mine is in preservation mode. Today, there are 22 OKD employees and 16 contract employees, who perform all the necessary activities for preserving the colliery. These activities include in particular ventilating the mine, draining water and other safety measures.

In accordance with Act No. 44/1988 of the Czech law on the utilisation of mineral resources, the owner and administrator of the mine, OKD, is obliged to preclude the deterioration of the coal deposit. That is another reason why the company desires to explore the reserves of coal and gas in the Frenštát site.

An application for the relevant permit requires a statement on the impacts of the prospective exploratory activities on the environment.

The landscape planning policy of the Moravian-Silesian Region still counts with the land reserve for the Frenštát colliery and its existing structures. Similarly, the current version of the national energy policy includes a detailed survey of the deposit. The survey results should be used in preparing a qualified decision on the future of the deposit.



OKD Frenštát Mine - illustrative picture




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