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DOL/MSHA RIN: 1219-AB14 Publication ID: Fall 2007
Title: Verification of Underground Coal Mine Operators' Dust Control Plans and Compliance Sampling for Respirable Dust
Abstract: MSHA's current standards require that all underground coal mine operators develop and follow a mine ventilation plan for each mechanized mining unit that we approve. However, we do not have a requirement that provides for verification of each plan's effectiveness under typical mining conditions. Consequently, plans may be implemented by mine operators that could be inadequate to control respirable dust. In response to comments received on the July 2000 proposed rule for MSHA to withdraw the rule, MSHA published a new proposed rule on March 6, 2003. The proposed rule would have required mine operators to verify, through sampling, the effectiveness of the dust control parameters for each mechanized mining unit specified in the approved mine ventilation plan. The use of approved powered air-purifying respirators and/or verifiable administrative controls would have been allowed as a supplemental means of compliance when MSHA had determined that all feasible engineering or environmental controls were exhausted. Public hearings were held in May 2003, and the comment period, originally scheduled to close on June 4, 2003, was extended until July 3, 2003. On June 24, 2003, MSHA announced that all work on the final rule would cease and the rulemaking record would remain open in order to obtain information concerning Continuous Personal Dust Monitors being tested by NIOSH. A Federal Register notice was published on July 3, 2003, extending the comment period indefinitely. NIOSH issued a report on the continuous personal dust monitor in September 2006 and another report concerning test results in June of 2007. MSHA will determine the next course of action after a review of all data and test results.

Agency: Department of Labor(DOL) Priority: Other Significant
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Long-Term Actions
Major: No Unfunded Mandates: No
CFR Citation: 30 CFR 70; 30 CFR 75; 30 CFR 90
Legal Authority: 30 USC 811; 30 USC 813; 30 USC 961; 30 USC 957
Legal Deadline: None

Action Date FR Cite
NPRM 07/07/2000 65 FR 42122
Notice of Hearings; Close of Record 07/07/2000 65 FR 42186
Extension of Comment Period; Close of Record 08/11/2000 65 FR 49215
Close of Record 08/11/2000
NPRM 03/06/2003 68 FR 10784
Notice of Public Hearing; Close of Record 03/17/2003 68 FR 12641
Extension of Comment Period 05/29/2003 68 FR 32005
NPRM Comment Period End 06/04/2003
Extension of Comment Period 07/03/2003 68 FR 39881
NPRM To Be Determined

Additional Information: This rulemaking is related to RIN 1219-AB18 (Determination of Concentration of Respirable Coal Mine Dust) and RIN 1219-AB48 (Continuous Personal Dust Monitors).
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: Undetermined Government Levels Affected: None
Federalism: No
Energy Effects: No Included in the Regulatory Plan: No
RIN Information URL: Public Comment URL:
Initial (Administrative Startup and /or Capital) Cost: $0 Yearly (Annual Operating) Cost: $0
Related RINs: Related to 1219-AB18, Related to 1219-AB48
Agency Contact:
Patricia W. Silvey
Director, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances
Mine Safety and Health Administration
Room 631,1100 Wilson Boulevard,Room 2350
Arlington,VA 22209-3939
Phone:202 693-9440
Fax:202 693-9441