Agency Activities and Accomplishments

Date this page was last updated: 02/14/12


2001 Activities and Accomplishments


Dozer Stockpile Regulations Save a life. 

Title 36, Series 27 Section 5.1(b) 1-5 requires the enclosed cab be equipped with strengthened glass and/or a window support system.  A two-way communications system with a back-up system, two self-contained self-rescuers,  and a means of emergency lighting for the mobile equipment operator must be provided.  Also, a remote control device to stop the flow of coal from the stockpile and to stop the coal coming onto the stockpile must be in the cab and tested weekly.  View the photo below of a dozer entrapped in a coal stockpile.  The operator was saved by the strengthened glass in the cab.

Entrapped dozer in a coal stockpile.

Fairmont – Buckhannon Office Moves

By the end of May, the Fairmont and Buckhannon Offices will have merged.  The combined offices are moving to a new location in south Fairmont.  The new office is in the Marion Square shopping center and offers plenty of room and parking.  The Buckhannon Office will move first, around the 15th of the month, with the Fairmont Office moving the next week.

New Regulation

The Board Of Coal Mine Health and Safety has issued a new regulation concerning the operation of track haulage locomotives.  Copies of the new regulation have been mailed to all underground operations for comment.  The effective date of the new regulation is August 15, 2002

Pre-Shift Examiners Competition

For the first time, a pre-shift examiners competition will be held during the 2002 State Mine Rescue Contest.  Any certified person from any state may enter.  Contestants will be judged on their ability to make a proper pre-shift examination in a timely manner, checking for ventilation, roof conditions and any other hazards to the on-coming crew.  The “Fireboss” will examine part of the mine and then fill out his pre-shift report, and will be graded on both parts.

Inter-Agency Training

In response to the increased number of fatal mining accidents in West Virginia during 2001, Governor Wise requested that all relevant state agencies make a joint effort to reverse this trend. The OMHST, enlisted the assistance of field inspection personnel from the Division of Environmental Protection. The two agencies have implemented a mutual assistance program. In April, joint training sessions were conducted at various locations for all OMHST and WVDEP inspection personnel.

Revised 40hr Program on CD

MHS&T and WVU Mining Extension Office have recently released a CD containing the revised 40-hour Surface Apprentice Miner Program.  The program is in a Power Point format and is being made available to trainers statewide.  Currently in production is a revision to the 80- hour Underground Apprentice program. It will also be released in the Power Point format, as will most future training programs produced by MHS&T.

Mine Rescue Training

In mid February, our mine rescue team went through a week of hazardous material (hazmat) training at the Mine Academy in Beckley.  Not only were the classroom sessions long and difficult, but at the end of the week the team had to go through a very tough simulation.  The simulation took place at the old turnpike tunnel, now known as the Center for National Response’s Memorial Tunnel complex.  The scenario was of a large building collapse and an attempt to rescue survivors.  This was a pilot traning project to see how mine rescue teams could be utilized in these types of disasters.  The drill was by all accounts extremely difficult, and very realistic.  

 


 

2001 Activities and Accomplishments

 

25th Anniversary of the Mine Safety and Health Administration Academy

 

West Virginia Office of Miners' Health Safety and Training employees took part in the 25th anniversary celebration of the MSHA Academy.  Members of the mine rescue team demonstrated rescue equipment and techniques as well as mine-fire fighting abilities.

 

fire fighting demonstration (75817 bytes)                             mine rescue demonstration  (79756 bytes)                           mine rescue equipment (89755 bytes)  

            Fire Fighting Demonstration             Mine Rescue Demonstration             Mine Rescue Equipment

 

 

New Electrical Regulation

New rules and regulations governing the standards for certification of coal mine electricians in the state of West Virginia were filed.  For more information go to:  electrical. certification  regulations.

 

Mine Inspectors Examination

 

The Mine Inspectors Examination was conducted in July and August by the Mine Inspectors Examining Board.  New rosters of applicants for Underground Inspector, Safety Instructor and Surface Mine inspector were produced.

Roof Control Seminar

All MHS&T roof control inspectors attended a roof control seminar at the Mine Health and Safety Academy, Beckley WV on May 30 and 31. Representatives from NIOSH, MSHA, and MSHA’s Technical Support group provided information about remote control mining, ATRS extensions, pull tests, multiple-seam mining, and a roof bolt jam nut problem that could only be observed after a roof fall occurred.

Mine Rescue Contests

Throughout the summer MHS&T safety staff helped organize and judge  Mine Rescue contests throughout West Virginia and several neighboring states.

Mine Rescue Contest (117733 bytes)                 2000 rescue team.jpg (208556 bytes)                     Bench contest photo.

                       Mine Rescue Contest         WVMHS&T Rescue Team 2000      Bench Contest

MHS&T at State Fair of West Virginia (August 2001)

Again this year, volunteers from Charleston and every regional office staffed our booth at the State Fair of West Virginia. Our efforts were well received, as a continuous coal-related video was presented, souvenirs were given out and coal mine safety and the future of coal was discussed with many interested persons. Below are photographs of our booth at the fair.

state fair  booth 121962 bytes)                        state fair booth(110846 bytes)

New Safety Videos

A new training video has been produced and distributed to all mines in the state.  The video shows details of fatals 1- 6 of 2001. It also includes introductory remarks by Governor Wise.

The two latest safety films available from MHS&T are “Dozer Stockpile Safety” and “Highwall Mining”.   The stockpile safety video came about as a result of several accidents involving dozers becoming trapped in stockpiles with underground feeders.  The film focuses on the enclosed cabs of the dozers and how the now- required strengthened glass and other safety features protects the operator if the dozer should become entrapped. 

 

The second film concerns one of the newest surface mining techniques – Highwall Miners.  There are approximately 15 of these machines now operational in the state with more installations planned.  A Highwall Miner is a hybrid cross of an auger and a continuous miner.  Using a continuous miner head, coal recovery is much greater than with a conventional auger and the depth of the cut may be as deep as 900 feet.  This video shows a Highwall Miner in operation and details the safety hazards associated with these machines.  

For more information concerning these videos and all training films produced by this agency go to: Multimedia Resources

Thermal Dryer Training

MSHA’s District 5 requested that our agency provide thermal dryer training for their mine inspectors. Clark Gillian, inspector in the Region 4 office, traveled to MSHA’s District 5 in Norton, Virginia and provided the training there.  Eleven MSHA and seven Virginia mine inspectors attended the weeklong class given in early March.  Students learned about the five McNally and the three ENI thermal dryers operating in southwest Virginia through 21 hours of classroom training. MSHA reports the training provided by our agency was well received and very helpful.

Mountaineer Guardian Awards (January 2001

 The 2000 Mountaineer Guardian Awards were presented at the 28  th Annual West Virginia Mining Symposium (sponsored by the West Virginia Coal Association Inc.) on February 15, 2001 during a luncheon ceremony.  For more information follow this link: Mountaineer Guardian Awards.

Coal Stockpile Regulation

The new safety precautions for dozers working on coal stockpiles will become effective January 1, 2001.  Title 36, Series 27 Section 5.1(b) 1-5 requires the enclosed cab be equipped with strengthened glass and/or a window support system.  A two-way communications system with a back-up system, two self-contained self-rescuers,  and a means of emergency lighting for the mobile equipment operator must be provided.  Also, a remote control device to stop the flow of coal from the stockpile and to stop the coal coming onto the stockpile must be in the cab and tested weekly.

 

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