October 30th was set aside as Mine Rescue Day (MRD) in 2013 as a time to recognize the dedication and sacrifice of volunteers who risk their own lives to save other miners.
Throughout our nation’s history, members of the mining community have been called upon to rescue their fellow miners from emergency situations in coal and metal and nonmetal mines, whether trapped by fires, explosions, roof falls, flooding or harmful gases. Over time, these mine rescuers have become better trained and organized, and the equipment they use has become ever more sophisticated.
Today, over 250 mine rescue teams are certified and equipped to perform mine rescue operations in the United States. They train and compete in mine rescue contests organized across the United States, culminating in national championships for coal and for metal and nonmetal mines, so they are ready to answer the call that they hope never comes. When they are called, these rescuers do not hesitate. They undertake some of the most difficult and risky emergency response work in this country, sometimes traveling miles in dark underground mines filled with debris and poisonous and explosive gases in order to find missing miners or recover those who did not survive. For more information on mine rescue, visit our mine rescue training page.
On Mine Rescue Day, we salute these brave individuals who give their time and risk their lives in the service of others.