Examinations of Working Places in Metal and Nonmetal Mines

REINSTATED RULE

The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is reinstating the regulatory provisions for examinations of working places in metal and nonmetal mines published on January 23, 2017.  The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued an order on June 11, 2019, and a mandate on August 23, 2019, requiring this action.  The reinstated final rule is effective on September 30, 2019.  MSHA will use the next 90 days to fully implement the reinstated rule.

The final rule requires that:

  • A competent person examine each working place for conditions that may adversely affect the safety or health of miners.  The working place must be examined at least once each shift, before miners begin work in that place.
  • Promptly initiate appropriate corrective action when adverse conditions are found.
  • Promptly notify miners in affected areas if adverse conditions are found and not corrected before miners are potentially exposed.
  • Withdraw all persons from affected areas when alerted to any conditions that may present an imminent danger, until the danger is abated.
  • Create an examination record before the end of each shift that includes:
  • The name of the person conducting the examination;
  • Date of the examination;
  • Location of all areas examined;
  • A description of each condition found that may adversely affect the safety or health of miners; and
  • The date when each described condition is corrected.
  • Make the examination record available to MSHA and miners’ representatives, with a copy provided upon request.