MSHA Reopens Comments on Underground Refuge Training

WASHINGTON — A Federal Register notice was published this week by the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) announcing the limited reopening of the period to receive comments on the “frequency for motor task (also known as ‘hands-on’ training), decision-making, and expectations training for miners to deploy and use refuge alternatives in underground coal mines.”  A copy of the notice can be found here. Comments must be submitted by Dec. 16, 2013.

As you will recall, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia remanded a training provision in the final refuge alternative rule back to MSHA, holding that the secretary had not adequately explained the basis for requiring task-training as opposed to quarterly training. This notice solicits comments upon which the agency will determine its course of action to either leave the existing rule as is or modify the rule based on the comments received.

During the original comment period, which included the government shutdown period, the agency received only one comment. In response to a request, the agency decided to reopen the comment period for 30-days.

For more information please contact bwatzman@nma.org or (202) 463-2657.

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