MSHA awards nearly $1M in mine safety training grants

Original article published by MSHA


Brookwood-Sago grants seek to make mining safe for workers, operators 

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Labor today announced the award of $985,284 in grants to support the development and delivery of education and training by 10 organizations that will help identify, avoid and prevent unsafe working conditions in, and around the nation’s mines.

Supported by the Brookwood-Sago Mine Safety grant program, recipients will create training materials, promote and conduct mine safety training or educational programs, and evaluate their effectiveness. The awards align with the department’s Mine Safety and Health Administration’s emphasis on targeting programs and materials for smaller mines and the miners working at them. MSHA is seeking to educate miners and industry employers about new federal standards, and high-risk activities or hazards the agency identifies.

“The Mine Safety and Health Administration exists to protect the safety and health of the nation’s miners,” said Assistant Secretary for Mine Safety and Health Chris Williamson. “The tragedies at the Brookwood and Sago mines are stark reminders of the risks miners face on the job. The grants we’re awarding today will support critically important training and education that the people working in our mines need and deserve.”

Established under the Mine Improvement and New Emergency Response Act of 2006, the program honors 25 miners who died in mine disasters at the Jim Walter Resources #5 mine in Brookwood, Alabama, in 2001, and at the Sago Mine in Buckhannon, West Virginia, in 2006.

The recipients Brookwood-Sago grants in fiscal year 2022 are as follows:

  • University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa received $158,962, to develop training materials for a three-hour, instructor-led course to raise workplace hazards awareness among new, inexperienced surface mine operators.
  • Arizona Board of Regents at the University of Arizona in Tucson received $157,936, for comprehensive training, assessment and compliance reporting tools in its “SMARTer Training: A Data-Driven, Collaborative Toolkit to Improve Training and Reporting Outcomes for Contractors and Small Mine Operators” project.
  • Hutchinson Community College in Kansas received $100,300, for hazard recognition training materials to include virtual reality simulation and traditional materials to train Kansas and Nebraska miners.
  • Southeast Community and Technical College in Cumberland, Kentucky, received $82,438 to develop, market, deliver and evaluate Parts 46 and 48 coal and metal nonmetal Powered Haulage and Mobile Equipment Safety Training.
  • United Mine Workers of America Career Centers Inc. in Prosperity, Pennsylvania, received $55,046 to develop a bilingual “Miners’ Statutory Rights Awareness” training program to complement existing miner’s statutory rights training that may be used to either inform new miners or reinforce the understanding of experienced miners of their legal rights under U.S. laws and regulations and the appropriate response(s) if they encounter unsafe or unhealthy working conditions.
  • South Dakota School of Mines and Technology in Rapid City received $120,000, to develop virtual reality training, interactive training materials and New Miner Training Program focused on prevention of unsafe conditions in mines, bring awareness to hazards and preparedness.
  • Western Dakota Technical College, also in Rapid City received $109,945 for training focused on power haulage and mobile equipment safety, and mine emergency prevention and preparedness.
  • The University of Texas at Arlington received $50,000 for training materials focused on identifying fall hazards and best practices in reducing minors’ workplace injuries and fatalities; and to develop fall prevention training for miners.
  • Virginia Department of Energy in Big Stone Gap received $50,000 to enhance the virtual reality training to simulate conditions at mine sites to help identify, avoid and prevent unsafe working conditions and avoid unsafe acts, in and around mines with the potential to cause accidents in the workplace.
  • West Virginia Research Corp. in Morgantown received $100,657, to provide emergency prevention and preparedness training to coal miners and coal mine operators in mine rescue training and dry chemical fire training to respond to emergencies involving fire in underground coal mines.

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MSHA Offering $1M in Safety Grants

First published by MSHA

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Labor today announced a funding availability of up to $1 million in grants through its Brookwood-Sago grant program to support education and training to help the mining community identify, avoid and prevent unsafe and unhealthy working conditions in and around the nation’s mines.

Established by the Mine Improvement and New Emergency Response Act of 2006, the program’s efforts to make mines safer and healthier honors 25 miners who perished in disasters at the Jim Walter Resources #5 mine in Brookwood, Alabama, in 2001 and at the Sago Mine in Buckhannon, West Virginia, in 2006.

Administered by the department’s Mine Safety and Health Administration, the Brookwood-Sago grants will focus education and training programs on occupational hazards, including:

  • Exposures to respirable dust and crystalline silica.
  • Powered haulage and mobile equipment safety.
  • Mine emergency preparedness and rescue.
  • Electrical safety.
  • Contract and customer truck drivers.
  • Improving training for new and inexperienced miners, and managers and supervisors performing mining tasks.
  • Pillar safety for underground mines.
  • Falls from heights.

The grants may also support programs emphasizing training on miners’ statutory rights, including the right to a safe and healthy working environment, to refuse an unsafe task, and to have a voice in the safety and health conditions at the mine. Recipients may use the grant funding to develop educational and training materials, recruit mine operators and miners for the training, and to conduct and evaluate training.

In awarding the grants, MSHA will give special emphasis to education and training programs that target miners at smaller mines and underserved populations in the mining industry. They will also prioritize diversity, equity and inclusion.

Learn more or submit a grant application. The closing date for applications is Aug. 23, 2022. MSHA will award grants on or before Sept. 30, 2022. Learn more about MSHA.

McCraren Compliance assists employers in protecting their workers, starting with a comprehensive Work-site Analysis, Hazard Prevention, Controls, and Safety & Health Training.

Please contact us today at 888-758-4757 to learn how we can provide mine safety training and consulting for your business.