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On June 6, 2013, in Virginia Beach, Virginia, the members of the Joseph A. Holmes Safety Association (Holmes) overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment and changes to their by-laws to create a mine rescue organization within Holmes – the Holmes Mine Rescue Association. This action reestablishes mine rescue as an important function within the Joseph A. Holmes Association, which was created in 1916.

For the last three years, the Mine Safety and Health Administration has sought, within the mining community, to address the gaps in mine emergency response, particularly those identified in recent tragedies. At three mine rescue summits and several other events held with the mine rescue community on mine emergency response gaps, we have discussed the need for a national mine rescue structure to address many mine emergency response issues. The re-establishment of Holmes as a national organization to support and provide needed guidance for mine rescue is the solution.
Joseph A. Holmes and President Howard Taft
President Howard Taft accompanied by
Dr. Joseph A. Holmes, the first Director of the Bureau of Mines is watching a safety demonstration at Forbes Field more than 80 years ago. (More)

Constitution and By-Laws - Joseph A. Holmes Safety Association

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Rationale for Changes to the Joseph A. Holmes Safety Association’s Constitution and By-Laws

The purpose of these proposed changes to Constitution and By-Laws of the Joseph A. Holmes Safety Association is to go back to the roots and the original purpose of the Joseph A. Holmes Safety Association.

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More Information

  • Holmes Mine Rescue Association Organizational Structure


  • Holmes Mine Rescue Association Executive Committee - 11/20/2013


  • Holmes Mine Rescue Association Officers - 11/20/2013


  • Letter to the Mine Rescue Community from Joseph A. Main - 6/19/2013


  • Letter from Secretary - Holmes Mine Rescue Association - 7/17/2013


  • Membership Application


  • Mine Rescue Day


  • The Development of Risk and Readiness Assessment Models for MSHA and Industry - Consolidated Final Report
  • MSHA has been working towards the development of Risk and Readiness Assessment Models for MSHA and Industry. ABS Consulting was selected as our contractor in September, 2012 to support the development of risk and readiness assessment models for the coal mining industry, to help prevent major mine emergencies and improve emergency response. MSHA’s objective was to develop simplified tools that could be applied by Industry and MSHA for use at operational levels based on theoretical risk and readiness concepts. ABS completed their contract in September, 2013. This is their report.