US Department of Labor announces proposed rule to require mine operators to improve safe usage of mobile, powered-haulage equipment

First published by MSHA

Photo property of MSHA

WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration today announced a proposed rule to require mine operators employing six or more miners to develop a written safety program for mobile and powered haulage equipment (excluding belt conveyors) at surface mines and surface areas of underground mines. This proposed rule is one of several actions MSHA has taken to reduce fatal and nonfatal injuries involving surface mobile equipment used at mines and to improve safety and health.

Under the proposed rule, mine operators would implement a written safety program including actions to identify hazards and risks to reduce accidents, injuries and fatalities related to surface mobile equipment. Mine operators would have the flexibility to devise a safety program for their specific mining conditions and operations. In addition, MSHA would encourage its state grantees to provide training to address hazards and risks involving surface mobile equipment in small mining operations.

Read the proposed rule. Comments must be submitted by Nov. 8, 2021.

Learn more about MSHA and its rulemaking.


McCraren Compliance offers many opportunities in safety training to help circumvent accidents. Please take a moment to visit our calendar of classes to see what we can do to help your safety measures from training to consulting.

Stay Out – Stay Alive

First published by MSHA
MSHA Stay Out Stay Alive Logo for 2021

Photo property of MSHA.gov

Stay Out, Stay Alive 

Exploring or playing at active and abandoned mine sites is dangerous, potentially fatal 

Water-filled quarries and pits hide rock ledges, old machinery and other hazards.  The water can be deceptively deep and dangerously cold.  Steep, slippery walls make exiting the water difficult.  Hills of loose material can easily collapse on an unsuspecting biker or climber.  Vertical shafts can be hundreds of feet deep and may be completely unprotected, or hidden by vegetation.

Even so dozens of people are injured or killed while exploring or playing on mine property every year.  The men and women employed in our nation’s mines are trained to work in a safe manner.  For trespassers, hazards are not always apparent.

For example:

  • Water-filled quarries can not only hide rock ledges but can also contain dangerous electric currents that become deadly under water.
  • Abandoned mine shafts that may seem fun to explore can unexpectedly collapse.

As students return to school while the weather is still warm and water seems inviting, it is more important than ever to remind people to stay out of abandoned or active mine sites like quarries and pits – and stay alive.

Visit https://www.abandonedmines.gov/staying-safe to learn more about abandoned mine and quarry accidents. Please help us raise awareness about this summertime danger. Most importantly, remind people to Stay Out, Stay Alive!


McCraren Compliance offers many opportunities in safety training to help circumvent accidents. Please take a moment to visit our calendar of classes to see what we can do to help your safety measures from training to consulting.

Comment period extended regarding escapeways and refuges in underground metal and nonmetal mines and announcement of public meeting

On July 29, 2019, MSHA announced a new Program Policy Letter (PPL) and request for comments regarding escapeways and refuges in underground metal and nonmental mines in the Federal Register.

In response to stakeholders, MSHA is providing additional time for interested parties to comment. The new deadline to submit comments is October 28, 2019. View the comment extension and announcement of public meeting notice on FederalRegister.gov.

MSHA will also be holding a public meeting to receive input from industry, labor, and other interested parties on October 10, 2019, from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. at MSHA’s Headquarters in Arlington, VA.

Update on Examinations of Working Places in Metal and Nonmetal Mines Rule

On September 30, 2019, the Mine Safety and Health Administration will publish a notice in the Federal Register regarding the reinstatement of the regulatory provisions for examinations of working places in metal and nonmetal mines originally published on January 23, 2017. The rule is being reinstated as the result of an order from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

View the Federal Register notice on the Office of the Federal Register’s Public Inspection Desk

The rule is effective on September 30, 2019.

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