Big conference planned for small mines

SEVERAL state and federal industry organisations have set the date for the first safety summit specifically focused on small coal mines.
Big conference planned for small mines Big conference planned for small mines Big conference planned for small mines Big conference planned for small mines Big conference planned for small mines

Chris Mark, Rock Mechanics Section Chief, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), Pittsburgh Research Laboratory

Donna Schmidt

The one-day conference is scheduled for September 17 at the Chief Logan Lodge in Logan, West Virginia.

Targeting underground operations with fewer than 50 workers the conference will look at safety issues vital to small mines in the coal-rich West Virginia and Kentucky regions.

Topics for the coal delegates range from communication, mine sealing, breathing apparatus, mine rescue, trapped miner location, refuge chambers, deep cover retreat mining and coal mine bumps.

Presentations include:

Overview of Small Mines, Issues and Answers – Kevin Burns (MSHA) and Jeff Welsh (NIOSH);

SCSR Training and Use – Mike Brnich (NIOSH), Ricky Boggs (MSHA) and Bob Stein (NIOSH);

Trapped Miner Location – Keith Heasley (West Virginia University);

Deep Cover Retreat Mining – Chris Mark (NIOSH); and

Bump Hazard Recognition and Prevention Controls – Tony Iannacchione (NIOSH).

Later in the summit two larger, state-specific workshops will be held for Kentucky and West Virginia.

Heading up the Kentucky session will be Johnny Green from the state’s Office of Mine Safety and Licensing and MSHA District 6 representative Norman Page.

Topics set for discussion include compliance with the OMSL’s annual retraining requirements for mine foremen; additional state inspection requirements; OMSL requirements for family liaisons at accidents; state mines’ compliance mine rescue provisions in the Miner Act and OMSL mine rescue teams.

Leading the West Virginia session will be Ron Wooten of the state’s Office of Miners’ Health, Safety and Training and MSHA District 4 representative Robert Hardman.

The West Virginia presentation, “Guidance for Meeting New Mining Regulation – West Virginia Coal Operations”, will touch on refuge chambers, mine seals, mine rescue and mining communication systems.

The summit is free but NIOSH registration is required.

The event is a collaboration between NIOSH, MSHA, the WV Coal Association, the WV Office of Miners’ Health, Safety and Training, the Kentucky Coal Association, the Kentucky Office of Mine Safety and Licensing and coal operators.

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