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Volume 62, Number 104, Page 29370-29373

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DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
Mine Safety and Health Administration

Petitions for Modification

The following parties have filed petitions to modify the application of mandatory safety standards under section 101 of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977.

1. G & P Contractors, Inc.

[Docket No. M-97-40-C]

G & P Contractors, Inc., Bryants Store, has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.342 (methane monitors) to its Stoney Fork No. 2 Mine (I.D. No. 15-17909) located in Knox County, Kentucky. The petitioner proposes to use hand-held continuous-duty methane and oxygen indicators on permissible three-wheel tractors instead of machine-mounted methane monitors. The petitioner asserts that this petition is based on the safety of the miners involved.

2. Pine Ridge Coal Company

[Docket No. M-97-41-C]

Pine Ridge Coal Company, 810 Laidley Tower, P.O. Box 1233, Charleston, West Virginia 25324 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.503 (permissible electric face equipment; maintenance) to its Robin Hood No. 9 Mine (I.D. No. 46-02143) located in Boone County, West Virginia. The petitioner proposes to replace a padlock on battery plug connectors on mobile battery-powered machines with a threaded ring and a spring loaded device to prevent the plug connector from accidently disengaging while under load. The petitioner asserts that application of the standard would cause a diminution of safety to the workers. In addition, the petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method would provide at least the same measure of protection as would the mandatory standard.

3. Peabody Coal Company

[Docket No. M-97-42-C]

Peabody Coal Company, 800 Laidley Tower, P.O. Box 1233, Charleston, West Virginia 25324 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR

[[Page 29371]]

75.1905(a) (dispensing of diesel fuel) to its Marissa Mine (I.D. No. 11-02440) located in Washington County, Illinois. The petitioner requests a modification of the standard to allow its diesel fueled vehicles to be refueled underground from a surface diesel fuel storage tank which would allow diesel fuel to be stored and used from the surface. The petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method would provide at least the same measure of protection as would the mandatory standard.

4. Peabody Coal Company

[Docket No. M-97-43-C]

Peabody Coal Company, 800 Laidley Tower, P.O. Box 1233, Charleston, West Virginia 25324 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.503 (permissible electric face equipment; maintenance) to its Marissa Mine (I.D. No. 11-02440) located in Washington County, Illinois. The petitioner requests that its August 1992 granted petition for modification be amended to allow an additional device to be permitted instead of a padlock for the purpose of locking battery plugs to battery tray receptacles on permissible, mobile, battery powered machines. The petitioner proposes to attach a spring-loaded plug interlock to the plug receptacle which is permanently attached to the battery case. The petitioner states that the spring-loaded plug interlock has been designed so that when the battery plugs are secured and the spring loaded interlock released, the threaded ring securing the battery plugs cannot become loose.

5. Bledsoe Coal Corporation

[Docket No. M-97-44-C]

Bledsoe Coal Company, 1374 Highway 192 East, London, Kentucky 40741-3123 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.362(d)(2) (on-shift examination) to its Mine No. 4 (I.D. No. 15- 11065) located in Leslie County, Kentucky. The petitioner proposes to make methane tests at locations other than at the face during roof bolting operations. The petitioner proposes to install a detector on each roof bolter that would operate in the working place and attach the sensor to the cross arm that connects the Automated Temporary Roof Support (ATRS) to the roof bolter instead of using an extendable probe to the face. The petitioner asserts that the detector will provide a continuous readout visible to the roof bolter operator. The petitioner alleges that application of the standard would result in a diminution of safety to the miners. In addition, the petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method would provide at least the same measure of protection as would the mandatory standard.

6. Bledsoe Coal Corporation

[Docket No. M-97-45-C]

Bledsoe Coal Corporation, 1374 Highway 192 East, London, Kentucky 40741-3123 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.362(d)(2) (on-shift examination) to its Mine No. 60 (I.D. No. 15- 12941) located in Leslie County, Kentucky. The petitioner proposes to make methane tests at locations other than at the face during roof bolting operations. The petitioner proposes to install a detector on each roof bolter that would operate in the working place and attach the sensor to the cross arm that connects the Automated Temporary Roof Support (ATRS) to the roof bolter instead of using an extendable probe to the face. The petitioner asserts that the detector will provide a continuous readout visible to the roof bolter operator. The petitioner alleges that application of the standard would result in a diminution of safety to the miners. In addition, the petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method would provide at least the same measure of protection as would the mandatory standard.

7. Bledsoe Coal Corporation

[Docket No. M-97-46-C]

Bledsoe Coal Corporation, 1374 Highway 192 East, London, Kentucky 40742-3123 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.362(d)(2) (on-shift examination) to its Mine No. 66 (I.D. No. 15- 17172) located in Leslie County, Kentucky. The petitioner proposes to make methane tests at locations other than at the face during roof bolting operations. The petitioner proposes to install a detector on each roof bolter that would operate in the working place and attach the sensor to the cross arm that connects the Automated Temporary Roof Support (ATRS) to the roof bolter instead of using an extendable probe to the face. The petitioner asserts that the detector will provide a continuous readout visible to the roof bolter operator. The petitioner alleges that application of the standard would result in a diminution of safety to the miners. In addition, the petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method would provide at least the same measure of protection as would the mandatory standard.

8. Leeco, Inc.

[Docket No. M-97-47-C]

Leeco, Inc., 1374 Highway 192 East, London, Kentucky 40741-3132 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.362(d)(2) (on- shift examination) to its Mine No. 63 (I.D. No. 15-16413) Perry County, Kentucky. The petitioner proposes to make methane tests at locations other than at the face during roof bolting operations. The petitioner proposes to install a detector on each roof bolter that would operate in the working place and attach the sensor to the cross arm that connects the Automated Temporary Roof Support (ATRS) to the roof bolter instead of using an extendable probe to the face. The petitioner asserts that the detector will provide a continuous readout visible to the roof bolter operator. The petitioner alleges that application of the standard would result in a diminution of safety to the miners. In addition, the petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method would provide at least the same measure of protection as would the mandatory standard.

9. Leeco, Inc.

[Docket No. M-97-48-C]

Leeco, Inc., 1374 Highway 192 East, London, Kentucky 40741-3132 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.362(d)(2) (on- shift examination) to its Mine No. 68 (I.D. No. 15-17497) located in Perry County, Kentucky. The petitioner proposes to make methane tests at locations other than at the face during roof bolting operations. The petitioner proposes to install a detector on each roof bolter that would operate in the working place and attach the sensor to the cross arm that connects the Automated Temporary Roof Support (ATRS) to the roof bolter instead of using an extendable probe to the face. The petitioner asserts that the detector will provide a continuous readout visible to the roof bolter operator. The petitioner alleges that application of the standard would result in a diminution of safety to the miners. In addition, the petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method would provide at least the same measure of protection as would the mandatory standard.

10. Island Creek Coal Company

[Docket No. M-97-49-C]

Island Creek Coal Company, Consol Plaza, 1800 Washington Road, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15241 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.364(b)(4) (weekly examination) to its Ohio No. 11 Mine (I.D. No. 15-03178) located in Union County, Kentucky. Due to deteriorating roof conditions and water accumulations, weekly examinations would unnecessarily expose persons

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examining Seal Nos. 1 and 2 to hazardous conditions. The petitioner proposes to monitor the water level by a float and if the water level goes away indicating a problem with the seal below water, a set of contacts will close sounding an alarm in the mine-wide monitoring system on the surface; to check the water level each production day; to establish two check points to monitor the affected area; to maintain these check points in a safe condition; to have a certified person test these check points on a weekly basis for methane and the quantity of air; and to have the person making the tests place his/her initials, date, and time in a record book kept on the surface and made available for inspection by interested persons. The petitioner asserts the proposed alternative method would provide at least the same measure of protection as would the mandatory standard.

11. Canyon Fuel Company, LLC

[Docket No. M-97-50-C]

Canyon Fuel Company, LLC, 397 South 800 West, Saline, Utah 84654 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.1002 (location of trolley wires, trolley feeder wires, high-voltage cables and transformers) to its SUFCO Mine (I.D. No. 42-00089) located in Sevier County, Utah. The petitioner proposes to use high-voltage 4,160 volt cables to supply power to longwall equipment used inby the last open crosscut. The petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method would provide at least the same measure of protection as would the mandatory standard.

12. Peabody Coal Company

[Docket No. M-97-51-C]

Peabody Coal Company, 800 Laidley Tower, P.O. Box 1233, Charleston, West Virginia 25324 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.323(b)(1)(I) and (iii) (actions for excessive methane) to its Camp No. 1 Mine (I.D. No. 15-02709) located in Union County, Kentucky. The petitioner requests a modification of the standard to allow an alternative method of reducing the concentration of methane to levels below 1.0 percent where the roof bolting machine is working. The petitioner proposes to extend the line curtain up to the last row of permanent supports; to energize the roof bolting machine and install one row of permanent supports; to extend the line curtain and make a methane check as each row of supports is installed; and to deenergize all equipment in the event that the methane is 1.5 percent. The petitioner asserts that modification of the standard would permit the methane to be cleared from a working face without exposing the miners to the hazards and injuries associated with roof falls while setting temporary roof supports. In addition, the petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method would provide at least the same measure of protection as would the mandatory standard.

13. Peabody Coal Company

[Docket No. M-97-52-C]

Peabody Coal Company, 800 Laidley Tower, P.O. Box 1233, Charleston, West Virginia 25324 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.362(d)(2) (on-shift examination) to its Camp No. 1 Mine (I.D. No. 15-02709) located in Union County, Kentucky. The petitioner proposes to make a methane test using manual systems or probes at the exhaust of the continuous miner scrubber on sections where a continuous miner equipped with such a device is in operation. The petitioner states that all the air from the face area would be pulled through the scrubber duct work, and the atmosphere that is being tested at the face would be the same atmosphere that would be tested at the exhaust of the scrubber duct. The petitioner asserts that application of the standard would diminish the safety of the miners. The petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method would provide at least the same measure of protection as would the mandatory standard.

14. Peabody Coal Company

[Docket No. M-97-53-C]

Peabody Coal Company, 800 Laidley Tower, P.O. Box 1233, Charleston, West Virginia 25324 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.323(b)(1)(I) and (iii) (actions for excessive methane) to its Camp No. 11 Mine (I.D. No. 15-08357) located in Union County, Kentucky. The petitioner requests a modification of the standard to allow an alternative method of reducing the concentration of methane to levels below 1.0 percent where the roof bolting machine is working. The petitioner proposes to extend the line curtain up to the last row of permanent supports; to energize the roof bolting machine and install one row of permanent supports; to extend the line curtain and make a methane check as each row of supports is installed; and to deenergize all equipment in the event that the methane is 1.5 percent. The petitioner asserts that modification of the standard would permit the methane to be cleared from a working face without exposing the miners to the hazards and injuries associated with roof falls while setting temporary roof supports. In addition, the petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method would provide at least the same measure of protection as would the mandatory standard.

15. Peabody Coal Company

[Docket No. M-97-54-C]

Peabody Coal Company, 800 Laidley Tower, P.O. Box 1233, Charleston, West Virginia 25324 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.362(d)(2) (on-shift examination) to its Camp No. 11 Mine (I.D. No. 15-08357) located in Union County, Kentucky. The petitioner proposes to make a methane test using a 20-foot extendable probe, and in the absence of methane, mining would continue. If methane is detected with the probe, the methane level at the face would be measured with a longer probe before continuing. The petitioner asserts that application of the standard would diminish the safety of the miners. In addition, the petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method would provide at least the same protection as would the mandatory standard.

16. Pen Coal Corporation

[Docket No. M-97-55-C]

Pen Coal Corporation, Frank Branch Mining, P.O. Box 200, Dunlow, West Virginia 25511 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.503 (permissible electric face equipment; maintenance) to its Deep Mine No. 4 (I.D. No. 46-08579) located in Wayne County, West Virginia. The petitioner proposes to replace a padlock on all battery plug connectors on mobile battery-powered machines with a threaded ring and a spring loaded device to prevent the plug connector from accidently disengaging while under load. The petitioner asserts that application of the standard would result in a diminution of safety to the miners. The petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method would provide at least the same measure of protection as would the mandatory standard.

17. South Akers Mining Company, LLC

[Docket No. M-97-56-C]

South Akers Mining Company, LLC, P.O. Box 392, Pikeville, Kentucky 41502 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.1710 (canopies or cabs; electric face equipment) to its Mine No. 2 (I.D. No. 15-17739) located in Letcher County, Kentucky. The petitioner proposes to operate its electric face equipment without canopies because of the mining heights.

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The petitioner states that the use of canopies on the equipment would be detrimental to the safety of the miners.

18. Headache Coal Company, Inc.

[Docket No. M-97-57-C]

Headache Coal Company, Inc., P.O. Box 188, Barbourville, Kentucky 40906 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 75.380(f)(4)(I) (escapeways; bituminous and lignite mines) to its Mine No. 7 (I.D. No. 15-17708) located in Knox County, Kentucky. The petitioner proposes to install two 5-pound or one 10-pound portable chemical fire extinguisher in the operator's deck of each Mescher tractor and to have the fire extinguisher readily accessible to the operator; to have the fire extinguisher inspected daily by the equipment operator prior to entering the escapeway; to have the operator make daily inspections of the fire extinguisher and keep the records at the mine site; and to have a sufficient number of spare fire extinguishers maintained at the mine in case an extinguisher becomes defective. The petitioner asserts that this petition is based on the safety of the miners.

19. Newmont Gold Company

[Docket No. M-97-03-M]

Newmont Gold Company, P.O. Box 669, Carlin, Nevada 89822 has filed a petition to modify the application of 30 CFR 56.14107(a) (moving machine parts) to its Genesis Mine (I.D. No. 26-00062) located in Eureka County, Nevada. The petitioner proposes to place a sign on its Dresser Haulpack 510 Haultrucks to provide additional protection from moving parts at the front of the motor in addition to that provided by the location of the cited pinch point (Citations Nos. 7704270 and 7704274) issued April 21, 1997; and to reinforce training of the truck drivers to avoid the cited area. The petitioner asserts that placing guards on the trucks' undersides would interfere with the trucks' fire suppression systems. In addition, the petitioner asserts that application of the standard would result in a diminution of safety to the miners.

Request for Comments

Persons interested in these petitions may furnish written comments. These comments must be filed with the Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances, Mine Safety and Health Administration, Room 627, 4015 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, Virginia 22203. All comments must be postmarked or received in that office on or before June 30, 1997. Copies of these petitions are available for inspection at that address.

Dated: May 23, 1997.
Patricia W. Silvey,
Director, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances.
[FR Doc. 97-14170 Filed 5-29-97; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4510-43-P