Federal mine health and safety academy to commemorate Mine Rescue Day

MSHA Media Advisory: [10/29/2015]

Federal mine health and safety academy to commemorate Mine Rescue Day, showcase mine emergency operations equipment and technology

BEAVER, W.Va. –To honor the commitment and courage of mine rescuers past and present, the Mine Safety and Health Administration will commemorate the third annual Mine Rescue Day on Friday, Oct. 30 by showcasing the latest emergency response equipment and technology at the National Mine Health and Safety Academy in Beaver, West Virginia.

MSHA officials and other members of the mining community will deliver brief remarks, and then invite media representatives to learn more about high-tech methods available to locate trapped or stricken miners, and ensure real-time communication between teams and the command center. Rescue experts will also discuss how teams prepare in the event of a mine emergency.

The Mine Rescue Day commemoration began three years ago on Oct. 30, the date in 1911 when Dr. Joseph A. Holmes – the first director of U.S. Bureau of Mines – organized the first national mine rescue demonstration at Forbes Field in Pittsburgh. While times have changed, the risk to mine rescuers remains. After a mine fire, explosion, water inundation or roof collapse, these men and women often travel miles underground, encountering dangerous conditions in an effort to locate missing and injured miners.

“The number of times that mine rescuers have placed their own safety and lives at risk to save others during our mining history is staggering,” said Joseph A. Main, assistant secretary of labor for mine safety and health.  “These brave men and women undertake some of the most difficult and risky emergency response work, under some of the most arduous and treacherous conditions.”

WHAT:              Mine Rescue Day commemoration with exhibit of mine emergency response equipment
WHO:                   Joseph A. Main, MSHA Assistant Secretary
Kenny Murray, Vice President of Operations, Alliance Coal
Don King, Consultant
Dave Jackson, President, UMWA Local 1713
John Urosek, Chief, Mine Emergency Operations, MSHA
WHERE:                   National Mine Health and Safety Academy
Mine Emergency Operations Building
1301 Airport Road
Beaver, WV 25813
WHEN:                   Oct. 30 at 10:45 a.m. EDT
Add to your iCal/Outlook calendar

Note to TV/Digital media:       A mine rescue video is available at this link.

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Media Contact:

Amy Louviere, 202-693-9423, louviere.amy@dol.gov

Release Number: 15-2119-PHI