The MoU was signed during a meeting addressing mine emergency response gaps and improving coordination between MSHA and member states. It was held at MSHA’s Approval and Certification Center in Triadelphia, W.Va. Development of a MoU has been under way since MSHA and the IMCC first opened discussions in early 2010.

“While member states have worked cooperatively and in close coordination with MSHA over the years, this MoU clarifies and solidifies our working relationship,” said Gregory E. Conrad, executive director, IMCC.

Some of the areas for collaboration and coordination from which MSHA and the IMCC will benefit include: accident investigation and reporting; emergency notification and response; mine rescue teams and training; certification, decertification and qualification of key miner positions, including foremen, examiners, blasters and electricians; coal waste impoundment safety; underground mine mapping; mine plan approvals; and liaisons with family members and the public following mine accidents.