Here are the high points of MSHA’s holiday safety initiative

MSHA is launching a multi-faceted “Holiday Safety Initiative” on December 8 to warn miners and mine operators nationwide about hazards in the workplace brought on by colder weather.

  • It’s easy for miners and mine operators to lose focus on work and possibly miss potential hazards in the mining workplace during the holidays.
  • Workers need to stay focused on their work each day during the holiday season.
  • In order to reach as many miners and mine operators as possible, the agency will send hazard alerts directly to every mine operation in the country over the next several weeks. These will serve as reminders of the potential hazards they face at their worksite and of the need to maintain concentration on hazards during the holiday and throughout the winter season.
  • The agency is also distributing an audio message from Assistant Secretary Dave Lauriski to radio stations around the country which alerts operators to help workers keep their focus on hazards during the holidays.
  • Agency inspectors, during their routine visits to mining operations, will remind workers about winter weather and the hazards it can bring to the workplace.
  • MSHA annually warns coal miners about the dangers that colder weather can bring to underground mines through its “Winter Alert” campaign which kicked off October 1 this year.
  • MSHA is stressing the importance of conducting thorough pre-shift mine examinations in order to prevent coal mine ignitions and explosions. The agency is also warning miners and operators in the metal and nonmetal industry about freezing and thawing actions, among other effects of colder weather, which may cause hazardous conditions.