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MSHA News Release No. 2001-0822
Mine Safety and Health Administration
Contact: Amy Louviere
Phone: (703) 235-1452

Released Wednesday, August 22, 2001

Sentinels of Safety Award Celebrates 75 Years
Mining Operations Recognized for Outstanding Safety Records in 2000

WASHINGTON -- Eight mining operations in Illinois, Louisiana, Nevada, Texas, Virginia, and Wyoming have been honored for their outstanding safety records in the annual Sentinels of Safety awards program sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor's Mine Safety and Health Administration and the National Mining Association.

For the 75th consecutive year, mining companies in various operational categories were recognized for achieving the greatest number of employee work-hours in 2000 without an injury that resulted in lost workdays. To qualify for a Sentinels of Safety award, a company must compile at least 30,000 employee work-hours during the year without a lost-time injury or fatality.

"I am extremely pleased for each of the winning operations, and pleased for the mining community at large," said Dave D. Lauriski, assistant secretary of labor for mine safety and health. "The workers at these mines can " and should " be justifiably proud of their accomplishments, for they have made safety a value in their jobs. They are living proof that abiding by safety and health standards saves lives, prevents injuries and improves productivity."

An additional 32 mining operations in 18 states were recognized for their exceptional safety records.

Considered the most prestigious award in the mining industry " as well as the oldest established award for occupational safety " the Sentinels of Safety competition was created in 1925 by then-Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover. A former mining engineer, Hoover realized the critical need for improving mine safety at a time when thousands of miners were injured or killed in job-related accidents each year. The award has continued uninterrupted to this day.

Attached: First Place awards list
                  Exceptional Safety Record awards list