Safety has to be the priority in your mine. Regulations have tightened, competition has stiffened, and your employees and your property have to stay safe.
The Mine Improvement and New Emergency Response (MINER) Act of 2006 mandated increased training, upgraded standards and improved emergency response. The federal government also increased mine safety reviews after the 2010 West Virginia Upper Big Branch coalmine explosion that killed 29 people. Mine operators now face more fines for not meeting safety regulations and can no longer ignore Mine Safety and Health Administration (MHSA) requests as they may have in the past. In addition, new federal rules lower the levels of coal dust allowed in mines and mandate that coal miners wear personal dust monitors.
With so many rules, regulations, and requirements, it’s easy to let something slip through the cracks. But that kind of slip up can now mean serious fines, or jeopardizing the safety of your workers.
Technology can help you not only navigate new regulatory systems, but can also make your mines safer and save lives. Here are a few ways you can use technology to stay on top of safety and training in your mine — without breaking the bank.
Train With Mobile
Miners are exposed to a whole host of risks, so as a mine operator, you have to constantly update emergency response plans and train workers. Use mobile apps like the Mine Safety: Emergency Response Plan to put procedures, personnel assignments, and evacuation procedures on your employees’ mobile devices. Other mobile apps can improve communications in the mine, which is especially important for safety. These apps log gas detection readings, times and locations and then immediately share the findings.
The virtual reality (VR) that is taking over the gaming industry can help mine workers experience the sights and sounds of a mine disaster without any risk. VR will be more realistic than classroom training, and can offer the sights, sounds, and smells of simulations for a lower cost. While there are facilities around the world that can simulate something very close to a true mine emergency, mine workers will be able to train via VR anywhere there is an Internet connection.
The MINER Act now mandates that all mines be wired with wireless communications and senor systems. They speed up communication between the mine and surface personnel in case of an emergency. And with wireless sensor technology, rescuers can now send rescue drills directly to missing miners, as the sensors “talk” to sensors also attached to miners.
These technologies can help you keep your staff safe, and at the same time make you more efficient and grow revenue. And getting started is easier than you think. Your employees probably already use mobile apps on their smartphones, and GoCanvas makes more than 225 mobile apps just for mine operators. You can try them free for 30 days today.
Want more detail how to use technology to train and keep staff safe? Download the free eBook, 3 Budget-Friendly Ways to Modernize Your Mine Operation.
What else is in the eBook? Insights and practical advice on how to:
- Automate work in and around your mine. The future of mining is in automation; learn how to incorporate some of this technology in your mine without going broke.
- Streamline operations with technology. Switch to mobile not only for your mine workers, but for the office, as well. See how to cut cost and gain efficiencies.
- Stay on top of Safety and training. Get more on how you can use mobile to help you train mine workers to stay safe.