Thursday, March 5, 2015

MSHA Tools Help Track Mining Violations

MSHA has launched two online tools to help operators, miners and others track regulatory violations
commonly associated with mining deaths and frequently found by mine inspectors in examinations of underground coal mines. The tools enhance other web-based methods MSHA offers the mining industry to operate more safely.

The first tool allows the user to monitor a mine’s compliance history, such as determining its eligibility for a pattern of violations citation or to review number of significant and substantial violations issued in a given time period after a corrective action plan is put into place. It identifies the safety and health standards spotlighted in MSHA’s “Rules to Live By” outreach and enforcement program that works to prevent some common causes of mining fatalities. It will be an important part of the agency's strategy to address the spike in deaths at metal and nonmetal mines where “Rules to Live By” standards are often cited.

The second tool tracks compliance with standards associated with hazardous conditions that pose the greatest risk to underground coal miners. In April 2012, MSHA published a final rule on Examinations of Work Areas in Underground Coal Mines for Violations of Mandatory Health or Safety Standards, which requires mine operators to identify and correct hazardous conditions and violations of nine health and safety standards. These nine standards address ventilation, methane, roof control, combustible materials, rock dust, equipment guarding and other safeguards.

For more information and how to access the tools, visit this page from MSHA.