MSHA seeking public input on safety, health management

THE US Mine Safety and Health Administration, which announced its proposed rule on comprehensive safety and health management programs last month, will begin taking comments this week at the first of three public meetings.
MSHA seeking public input on safety, health management MSHA seeking public input on safety, health management MSHA seeking public input on safety, health management MSHA seeking public input on safety, health management MSHA seeking public input on safety, health management

MSHA assistant secretary of labor for mine safety and health Joseph Main. Courtesy MSHA.

Donna Schmidt

The agency intends to use the information collected at the events to develop a rule that will help US mining operations be proactive about health and safety issues.

MSHA reminded the mining community that the first meeting will convene in Arlington, Virginia, October 8, at the agency’s national office.

On October 12, individuals can share their ideas at the Embassy Suites Sacramento in California.

The agency will wrap up the hearings October 14 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, at the Omni William Penn hotel. All three events begin at 9am local time and should conclude by 5pm.

Model program presentations are expected from academia as well as safety and health professionals, industry and worker organizations and government agencies.

MSHA said that the programs should be designed to prevent illness and injury, and comply with the outlines of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 (Mine Act).

Federal regulators are especially interested in program ideas that actively engage workers.

“Year after year, many mine operators successfully achieve low injury, illness and violation rates,” assistant secretary of labor for mine safety and health Joseph Main said, adding that MSHA wanted to hear about management programs in place that could benefit other mines.

“It is obvious there are some mines that need to change the culture of safety and health within their organizations,” he said.

“Hopefully, hearing about successful management programs will encourage them to move in the right direction.”

MSHA published its proposed rule plans in the Federal Register, September 9.

All interested parties wishing to submit comments must do so at the meetings, via the internet, or by e-mail, fax or regular mail by December 17, 2010.

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