Health and Safety Committee – October 2018

CMA’s Health and Safety Committee met at Trapper Mining in Craig, Colorado on September 6. We are excited to revive this important committee as safety is a high priority in our industry. The meeting was coordinated by board member, Laura Beverage, Vice Chair for Health and Safety. Moving forward the committee will be chaired by Karl Koehler, Stephen Laramore and Trent Peterson.

The committee discussed the following agenda items:

A workshop held in Denver September 10-11 by the Mine Safety and Health Research Advisory Committee to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health that advises NIOSH’s Office of Mine Safety and Health Research.

The goals of the workshop were to ascertain the safety and health-related issues around emerging technologies, specifically automation in the metals mining industry. Three questions were posed in a series of panel discussions designed to allow for considerable audience interaction:

  1. To what extent will automation and smart technologies be implemented in metal mining and in what time frame?
  2. What are the related emerging health and safety concerns?
  3. What gaps exist in occupational health and safety research related to automation and smart technologies?

Secondly, the committee discussed Executive Order 13777, which is intended to alleviate unnecessary regulatory burdens placed on the American people. MSHA has requested stakeholders’ assistance in identifying those regulations that could be repealed, replaced or modified without reducing miners’ safety or health. CMA is soliciting member comments on this Executive Order, particularly identifying regulations CMA would support repealing. If you have suggestions, please send them to CMA along with reasons why the agency should repeal the regulation.

Other items discussed included finding a way to develop a more up-to-date study guide and questions for the Colorado State Blasters examination, and convening a meeting of regional mining health and safety professionals to discuss issues.

Committee members expressed an interest in CMA hosting informal regional meetings of member companies that would include operators from Rocky Mountain states.

The next meeting of the CMA Health and Safety Committee will be on October 18 in Denver at the CMA office at 3:00 pm. The committee meets quarterly and our agenda will include an allotment of time at each meeting to facilitate discussion of health and safety topics between member companies.