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DOL Media Advisory - 05-446-PHI
U.S. Department of Labor
Contact: Dirk Fillpot
Phone: (202) 693-4676
Contact: Eryn Witcher
Phone: (202) 693-4676

Released Friday, March 18, 2005

Free Seminars on Coal Mine Roof Control Set for West Virginia and Pennsylvania
Sessions scheduled for Morgantown and Youngwood April 6 & 7, 2005

ARLINGTON, Va.- The U.S. Department of Labor's Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) will conduct free seminars on the prevention of coal mine roof falls April 6 in Morgantown, W.Va., and April 7 in Youngwood, Pa.

"Coal mine roof falls have historically been a leading cause of fatal accidents in underground coal mining and, although control of the coal mine roof in these mines has greatly improved in recent years, miners are still vulnerable to this deadly hazard," said David Dye, acting assistant secretary of labor for mine safety and health. "We at MSHA will continue to use our resources, including compliance assistance, efficiently and effectively to prevent and eliminate these kinds of accidents from the nation's coalfields."

MSHA experts in mine roof control, along with personnel from the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), will conduct the two seminars which will include information on innovations in standing support, identification of geological hazards, roof support applications and innovations, as well as roof stability during retreat mining.

Miners, mine operators and other mining company personnel at underground coal mine operations are encouraged to attend the free seminars. Interested parties are asked to register for the seminars by sending a telefax indicating their name and the seminar they plan to attend to MSHA's National Mine Health and Safety Academy at 304-256-3251 before March 31, 2005. Those unable to register prior to that date may attend the seminars on a walk-in basis provided space is available.

The seminars will be held as follows:

Morgantown, W.Va. -- Wednesday, April 6, 2005 - Lakeview Resort Conference Center, One Lakeview Dr.

Youngwood, Pa. -- Thursday, April 7, 2005 - Westmoreland County Community College, 400 Armbrust Rd. (exit 75 from the Pennsylvania Turnpike).

MSHA actively assists the mining industry to comply with federal requirements concerning mine safety and health in the nation's mining operations. For further information, see the MSHA web site at