MSHA's Main Hails New Mine Rescue Association

The MSHA administrator wrote that the Holmes Mine Rescue Association is the culmination of collaborative efforts by his agency and the mine safety community to address gaps in mine emergency response.

The Holmes Safety Association's members have approved a constitutional amendment and bylaws change and have voted to create a separate organization, the Holmes Mine Rescue Association, MSHA Assistant Secretary Joe Main reported in a June 13 post to the Labor Department's blog.

He said the new, national organization "will support and provide the necessary guidance for mine rescue. It also represents the culmination of collaborative efforts by my agency, the Labor Department’s Mine Safety and Health Administration, and the mine safety community to address gaps in mine emergency response. While MSHA oversees all mine rescues and recoveries, we work closely with mine operators and mine rescue teams to help locate trapped and missing miners."

MSHA and the HMRA will work with what Main described as "the entire mine rescue community – mine operators, labor groups, state agencies and mine rescue teams" in developing best practices for mine rescue and possibly assisting with mine rescue contests.

"Mine rescue is about the most dangerous and challenging rescue work undertaken in this country, and we owe it to those who volunteer for these high-risk missions the best training and support we can give them," he wrote.

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