MSHA: No mines meet criteria for Pattern of Violations notice

By |  June 30, 2016

msha-logoThe U.S. Department of Labor’s Mine Safety & Health Administration (MSHA) announced that for the first time since Pattern of Violations (POV) reforms began in 2010, none of the nation’s more than 13,000 mining operations meets the criteria for a POV notice.

The POV provision is a part of the Federal Mine Safety & Health Act of 1977 and is reserved for mines that pose the greatest risk to the health and safety of miners.

“The Pattern of Violations regulation is a law that works to rein in chronic violators and protect miners,” says Joe Main, assistant secretary of labor for mine safety and health. “It is achieving its purpose to improve mine operators’ compliance with safety and health standards and enable them to monitor their own compliance.”

MSHA launched the POV provision in 2010. Since then, the number of significant and substantial violations has decreased at mines that have undergone the POV process. MSHA reports that the number of violations issued at those mines declined 66 percent; unwarrantable failure violations decreased 84 percent; total violations fell 42 percent; and the operator-reported rate of lost-time injuries dropped 55 percent.

“MSHA’s actions have helped drive better compliance well beyond just the mines that met the criteria for further consideration for a POV notice,” Main says. “We have seen a cultural change in the mining industry where high numbers of serious violations at mines are no longer tolerated.”

Earlier this year, MSHA published its final POV rule to strengthen safety measures in the nation’s most dangerous mines. In recent years, MSHA has also developed two online tools to help mine operators monitor compliance, including the POV monitoring tool and the S&S rate calculator.

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About the Author:

Allison Kral is the former senior digital media manager for North Coast Media (NCM). She completed her undergraduate degree at Ohio University where she received a Bachelor of Science in magazine journalism from the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism. She works across a number of digital platforms, which include creating e-newsletters, writing articles and posting across social media sites. She also creates content for NCM's Portable Plants magazine, GPS World magazine and Geospatial Solutions. Her understanding of the ever-changing digital media world allows her to quickly grasp what a target audience desires and create content that is appealing and relevant for any client across any platform.

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