MSHA Proposes Rule Requiring Refuge Alternative

A new proposed rule from MSHA will require underground coal mines to provide refuge alternatives to protect miners when a life-threatening event makes escape impossible. The rule will implement Section 13 of the Mine Improvement and New Emergency Response (MINER) Act of 2006; the agency says the rule is based on agency data and experience, recommendations from a NIOSH report on refuge alternatives, research on available and developing technology, and existing regulations in several states.

The view the proposed rule, click here. Comments must be received by midnight EST on Aug. 18, 2008. MSHA will hold four public hearings that will begin at 9 a.m. and end after the last speaker (and in any event not later than 5 p.m.) on these dates:

  • July 29, 2008; Radisson Hotel Salt Lake City Downtown, 215 West South Temple, Salt Lake City, UT 84101; Contact: (801) 933–8022.
  • July 31, 2008; Marriott Charleston Town Center, 200 Lee Street East, Charleston, WV 25301; Contact: (304) 345–6500.
  • Aug. 5, 2008; Hilton Suites Lexington Green, 245 Lexington Green Circle, Lexington, KY 40503; Contact: (859) 271–4000.
  • Aug, 7, 2008; Sheraton Birmingham, 2101 Richard Arrington Jr. Blvd., Birmingham, AL 35203; Contact: (205) 324–5000.

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