WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Labor announced the availability of up to $400,000 in grant funding through its Brookwood-Sago grant program to support education and training to help identify, avoid and prevent unsafe working conditions in, and around, the nation’s mines.
Administered by the Department’s Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA), the Brookwood-Sago grants will focus on training and training materials on powered haulage (in particular, reducing vehicle-on-vehicle collisions, increasing seat belt use and improving belt conveyor safety), improving safety among contractors and reducing electrocutions. The grants will also focus on improving training for new and inexperienced miners, mine emergency prevention and preparedness, and other programs to prevent unsafe conditions in mines.
Established by the Mine Improvement and New Emergency Response (MINER) Act of 2006, the program promotes mine safety and honors 25 miners who died in two disasters at the Jim Walter Resources #5 mine in Brookwood, AL, in 2001 and at the Sago Mine in Buckhannon, WV, in 2006.
The grants will enable recipients to develop training materials, provide mine safety training or educational programs, recruit mine operators and miners for the training, and conduct and evaluate the training. MSHA will give special emphasis to programs and materials that target miners at smaller mines, including training miners and employers about new agency standards, high-risk activities or hazards identified by MSHA.