Mine safety regulations in the U.S. require a protected and secure space—or mobile refuge alternative—in all underground coal mines. In the event of an explosion or other mining disaster that prevents miners from immediately escaping, refuge alternatives protect miners from exposure to carbon monoxide and other toxic gases by providing breathable air and a safe environment for 96 hours.
The U.S. Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration says it will issue its Final Rule for Examination of Working Places in Metal and Nonmetal Mines. The new rule will be published in the Federal Register on Jan. 23, 2017, and go into effect on May 23, 2017.
Historically, December has been a particularly tragic month in U.S. coal mining.
Considered the worst mining accident ever, explosions at West Virginia’s Monongah Nos. 6 and 8 in 1906 claimed 362 lives.
On October 1, the National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA) enters its third decade. Unveiled in 1996, NORA is a partnership program to stimulate innovative research and improved workplace practices. Through NORA, diverse parties come together to create a research framework for the nation, including stakeholders from universities, large and small businesses, professional societies, government agencies, and worker organizations. NIOSH is proud to continue its role as steward of NORA.
Cities and towns beset by natural disasters or catastrophic events immediately turn to their community’s first responders to coordinate and execute rescue and recovery efforts.
The practice is no different when a calamity occurs in an underground mine.
The conviction last week of former Massey Energy Co. CEO Don Blankenship on charges related to the 2010 disaster at the Upper Big Branch mine in West Virginia will hopefully keep miners alive going forward, according to United Mine Workers of America International (UMWA) President Cecil E. Roberts.
The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) says federal inspectors issued 231 citations and seven orders during special impact inspections at 11 coal mines and five metal and nonmetal mines in October.
Historically, October is the deadliest month of the year in the metal and nonmetal mining industry. Since 2000, 51 fatalities occurred during the month, many of which involved powered haulage and machinery accidents at a time when mines prepare for seasonal changes.
Rule would require proximity detection devices on coal-haulage equipment underground
September 2, 2015
Haulage machinery in underground coal mines – such as shuttle cars, ram cars and scoops – would have to be equipped with technology that prevents miners from becoming struck, pinned or crushed, as per a proposed rule from the Mine Safety and Health Administration.