Report: APP CMHS Project 1




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4.2.4. U.S.A

U.S. underground coal mining operations produced 360 Million short tonnes of coal from about 600 mines in 2008. Through continuous improvements in safety management and technologies, the safety record of the industry has been significantly improved over the last 30 years. The fatalities had been dropped from 133 in 1980 to 30 in 2008.

Leading safety technologies include:

  • advancements in explosion prevention and control, in particular the development of dust explosibility meters

  • monitoring and prevention of respirable dust, including dust samplers, operation strategies and various control devices

  • ergonomics

  • control of diesel exhaust particulates.

Critical needs for future development include the development and implementation of a risk based approach to all facets of mining operations and throughout the entire industry. In addition, there are strong technological requirements for mining ground control (particularly in deep mining), monitoring of the atmosphere in inaccessible underground areas such as goaf, and proactive approach to spontaneous combustion management.


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