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MSHA News Release No. 97-1201
Mine Safety and Health Administration
Contact: Amy Louviere
Phone: (703) 235-1452

Monday, December 1, 1997


The Labor Department's Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) today announced a partnership agreement with the National Stone Association (NSA) designed to prevent occupational illness in the aggregate and mining industries. The agreement, which was signed by MSHA Assistant Secretary J. Davitt McAteer and NSA President Joy Wilson in a ceremony at the Luck Stone Quarry in Leesburg, Va., will promote training in air monitoring and sampling so that dust and noise hazards can be identified and eliminated.

"This program is aimed especially at the smaller metal and nonmetal operations to assist them in conducting their own exposure monitoring," said McAteer. "Employees will be instructed on how to do their own sampling, and the training will guide operations in setting up their own silicosis prevention program, in an effort to further protect the health of their workers."

Under the agreement, MSHA will provide instructors, classroom materials and sampling equipment, and cover any necessary maintenance and repairs. The program will consist of three-day training workshops, with one day of classroom training, one day of personal, on-site sampling and one day of case study reviews of control methods, interpretation of sampling results and a competency test.

In addition, workshop participants may borrow MSHA equipment to conduct additional sampling at their own operations in the year following the classroom and on-site program. NSA will provide participants with a list of American Industrial Hygiene Association-approved laboratories and arrange for analysis of samples at a listed laboratory of the company's choice.

Earlier this year, MSHA conducted two similar training sessions for NSA members, one at Luck Stone Quarry and one at the Tarmac Florida, Inc., quarry in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.

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