However, it was determined that by having both controllers available on the section and set to the same frequency, a situation could exist with the possibility that either remote controller could take control of the same continuous miner when in the range of the receiver. This could become a danger and could lead to an unforeseen accident if a second controller was used without knowledge of the operator.

The problem occurs because the continuous miner receiver will recognize the remote controller that has the higher battery voltage. Even though only one remote controller should be used and in the vicinity of the continuous miner at one time and the other remote should remain on charge or turned off, the possibility exists that both controllers can be active.

A controller/receiver program has been developed that will detect the presence of more than one remote by reading each remote’s unique transmitter ID code. Any time multiple remote transmitters are powered on and transmitting, the receiver on the continuous miner will respond to the presence of these multiple remotes by automatically de-energizing the pump circuit onboard the continuous miner.

Forced Potato will use the serial number of the remote as the unique transmitter ID code that is sent to the continuous miner’s receiver. MSHA recommends that mine operators who use the Cat remote controlled continuous miners contact their representative concerning this upgrade.