Category: Legally Speaking

Drugs, MSHA Enforcement, Maslow’s Hammer

Without a doubt, the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is an enforcement agency.  It walks, talks, thinks and acts like an enforcement agency. It sees itself as an enforcement agency. Enforcement is its favorite tool,...

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Interference Claims: 1 Step Back, 1 Step Forward?

by erik dullea and mark savit In March 2018, this column discussed discrimination and interference under section 105(c), and two important cases that considered alternative tests to prove an interference claim  — Franks v....

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Keeping Up With the OSHAs

by mark savit Those of us who have been involved in the industry over relatively long periods (in my case, a mere 48 years) are familiar with the ups and downs of mining. The coal sector is having a tough time and this page is...

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Judge’s Ruling May Halt Federal Leases

by ali nelson Yet another effort by President Donald Trump’s administration to roll back former-President Barack Obama-era policy changes impacting the coal industry has been overturned by the courts. The late-April decision by...

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Prepare for Additional Coal Dust Scrutiny

by erik dullea “Each case of advanced black lung disease is an entirely preventable tragedy, and represents mine operators’ unwillingness to adequately control mine dust exposures, and safety regulators failure to set, monitor...

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Managing the Minefield of Marijuana

by donna pryor When medical marijuana first started to become legal, mine operators responded in a similar way. Most mines continue to have a zero-tolerance policy for both applicants and current employees for several reasons:...

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MSHA’s Blind Spot on Powered Haulage Safety

by brian hendrix Last June, the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) published a Request for Information titled, “Safety Improvement Technologies for Mobile Equipment at Surface Mines and for Belt Conveyors at Surface...

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Safety Law Predictions for 2019-2020

by henry chajet and robert horn Unless you’ve been off the grid — way off — or maybe off the planet, you know the political campaigns are over and the election results are final. If you are a Democrat, you might be pleased that...

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Grading MSHAS’s Performance After 2 Years

by brian hendrix Almost two years into President Donald Trump’s first term, how would you grade the Mine Safety and Health Administration’s (MSHA) performance? Is MSHA more effective or efficient? No doubt, our nation’s mines...

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Top 10 Coal Producing States & Regions

Week Ending 11/30/2019
(in Thousand Short Tons)
 YTD '20YTD '19% Change
Wyoming248,981278,469-10.6
West Virginia85,65387,816-2.5
Pennsylvania45,55245,798-0.5
Illinois44,57745,423-1.9
Kentucky34,47936,502-5.5
Indiana31,38831,609-0.7
Montana29,97135,021-14.4
North Dakota24,35927,239-10.6
Texas19,54022,970-14.9
New Mexico14,0639,48148.3
Appalachian Total179,011184,438-2.9
Interior Total120,803125,806-4.0
Western Total349,211382,449-8.7
U.S. Total649,025692,693-6.3

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