Akzo Salt suspended plans Thursday to resume pumping water out of its flooded mine to focus on plugging a leak caused when part of the mine collapsed in March, company officials said.
Tom Pearson, an environmental engineer with the state Department of Environmental Conservation, said if the plugging effort works, the company won't need to pump out the salty water.
The company plans to pump concrete into 22 holes to be drilled above the collapsed area, Akzo spokeswoman Mary Kay Warner said.
Akzo stopped pumping salty water into the Genesee River on Sunday to move pumping equipment away from an approaching line of water.
The company had been trying to keep water from entering one of its main salt-production areas at the mine in Retsof, 27 miles southwest of Rochester.
Efforts to drill wells for the cement grout to plug the leak have run into problems when two drill bits broke off in the ground and were abandoned after becoming lodged in ground fractures, Pearson said.