MSHA announces public hearings on proposed rule for proximity detection systems on mobile mine machines

MSHA announces public hearings on proposed rule

for proximity detection systems on mobile mine machines

Funds provide U.S. mine workers with safety and health training

ARLINGTON, Va. — The U.S. Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration will hold four public hearings on its proposed rule for Proximity Detection Systems for Mobile Machines in Underground Coal Mines.

Published Sept. 2 in the Federal Register, the proposed rule would require coal mine operators to equip coal hauling machines and scoops with a technology that uses electronic sensors to detect motion or the location of one object relative to another. These systems can be programmed to send warning signals and stop machines before they injure or kill miners working in the confined space of an underground coal mine.

Coal hauling machines include shuttle cars, diesel-and battery-powered ram cars, and continuous haulage systems. Scoops in underground coal mines include both diesel-powered and electrical-powered scoops.

The agency has determined that miners are exposed to pinning, crushing and striking hazards when working near mobile machines in underground coal mines, and that working near these machines on the working section has resulted in a significant number of injuries and fatalities. MSHA data shows proximity detection systems could have prevented 42 fatalities on these machines from 1984 through 2014.

In January, MSHA published a final rule requiring operators of underground coal mines to equip continuous mining machines with proximity detection systems.

MSHA has scheduled stakeholder outreach meetings as follows:

City, State



Location and Address

Denver, Colo.

Oct. 6

9 a.m.

Embassy Suites Denver Downtown, 1420 Stout St.

Birmingham, Ala.

Oct. 8

9 a.m.

Sheraton Birmingham, 2100 Richard Arrington Jr. Blvd., North

Beaver, W.Va.

Oct. 19

8 a.m.

National Mine Health and Safety Academy, 1301 Airport Rd.

Indianapolis, Ind.

Oct. 29

9 a.m.

Indianapolis Marriott Downtown, 350 West Maryland St.

Note: All times listed are local.

MSHA News Release: [10/01/2015]
Contact Name: Amy Louviere

Phone Number: (202) 693-9423


Release Number: 15-1946-NAT

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