H. B. 4401
(By Delegates Caputo, Kuhn, Prunty,
Tucker, Sparks, Butcher and Dempsey)
[Introduced February 4, 2000; referred to the
Committee on the Judiciary.]
A BILL to amend and reenact section thirty-nine, article two,
chapter twenty-two-a of the code of West Virginia, one
thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, relating to
providing that a person may not perform any maintenance on a
mine belt conveyor unless it has been deenergized and locked
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That section thirty-nine, article two, chapter twenty-two-a
of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one,
as amended, be amended and reenacted to read as follows:
ARTICLE 2. UNDERGROUND MINES.
§22A-2-39. Belt conveyor; installation; maintenance; examination
of belt conveyors and belt entries.
(a) On or after the first day of July, one thousand nine
hundred seventy-one, all conveyor belts acquired for use
underground shall be flame-resistant conveyor belts.
(b) A clear travelway at least twenty-four inches wide shall
be provided on both sides of all belt conveyors installed after the
first day of July, one thousand nine hundred seventy-one. Where
roof supports are installed within twenty-four inches of a belt
conveyor, a clear travelway at least twenty-four inches wide shall
be provided on the side of such support farthest from the conveyor.
(c) On belt conveyors that do not transport men, stop and
start controls shall be installed at intervals not to exceed one
thousand feet. Such controls shall be properly installed and
positioned so as to be readily accessible.
(d) Persons shall not cross moving belt conveyors, except
where suitable crossing facilities are provided.
(e) All belt conveyors shall be inspected by a certified belt
examiner, mine foreman-fireboss or assistant mine foreman-fireboss
for frozen rollers and fire hazards following the last production
shift each week, also before holidays, vacation periods, as
hereinafter provided, with records kept of daily inspection.
(f)(1) Belt conveyors on which coal is transported on any shift shall be examined during each coal-producing shift. Such
examination shall be made of belt conveyors and belt conveyor
entries for unsafe conditions including, but not limited to, mine
gases, frozen rollers, hazardous roof or rib conditions and fires.
(2) Whenever an on-shift examination of a belt conveyor and
belt conveyor entry has not been made during the preceding shift,
an examination shall be made of the belt conveyor and belt conveyor
entry prior to the conveyor being started; or if any miner is going
to enter the belt conveyor entry, then the area where such miner
will be working shall be examined. Such examination shall be made
by a certified mine foreman-fireboss, assistant mine
foreman-fireboss, or a certified belt examiner. Thereafter,
on-shift examinations by a certified belt examiner, mine
foreman-fireboss or assistant mine foreman-fireboss shall be made
as herein required.
(g) In the conduct of the examination, the belt examiner, mine
foreman-fireboss or assistant mine foreman-fireboss shall travel
the full extent of the belt conveyor or belt conveyor entry
assigned and shall place his initials and the date and time of his
examination at or near each belt head and along each belt conveyor
he examines. Should the belt examiner, mine foreman-fireboss or assistant mine foreman-fireboss find a condition which he considers
dangerous to persons entering such area, he shall erect a danger
sign to prevent other persons from entering the area and notify his
immediate supervisor of the condition. Only state or federal
inspectors or authorized representatives of the miners, and persons
authorized by mine management to correct the condition, may enter
such area while the danger sign is posted. At the conclusion of
each shift, belt examiners, mine foreman-firebosses or assistant
mine foreman-firebosses shall record in a book provided for that
purpose the results of their examination, including comments
concerning the physical condition of the belt conveyor and the area
where the belt conveyor is located. Such book shall be examined
and countersigned by the mine foreman or his assistant and by the
person conducting such examination on the next oncoming shift.
(h) The examinations set forth in this section shall be the
only examinations required of belt conveyors and belt conveyor
entries, notwithstanding any provision of sections fourteen, twenty
or any other section of this chapter relating to the examination of
belt conveyors and belt conveyor entries.
(i) The board of miner training, education and certification
shall establish criteria and standards for the training, examination and certification of "belt examiners." Persons seeking
to be certified as a "belt examiner" must hold a miner's
certificate and have at least two years practical underground
mining experience. Such training, examination and certification
program shall, as a minimum, require a demonstration of knowledge
of belt conveyors roof control, ventilation and gases.
(j) Deluge-type water sprays, water sprinklers, dry chemical
sprinkler system or foam generators (designed to be automatically
activated in the event of a fire or rise in the temperature at or
near the belt drive) shall be installed at each main and secondary
conveyor drive that are located underground.
(k) All underground belt conveyors shall be equipped with
slippage and sequence switches.
(l) Telephones or other suitable communications shall be
provided at points where supplies are regularly loaded or unloaded
from the belt conveyors.
(m) After supplies have been transported on belt conveyors,
such belts shall be examined by a belt examiner, mine
foreman-fireboss or assistant mine foreman-fireboss for unsafe
conditions prior to the transportation of men.
(n) No person shall be permitted to perform any work within the confines of the cargo space of a crusher or feeder, unless the
crusher or feeder has been deenergized and locked out.
(o) No person may perform any maintenance on a belt conveyor
unless it has been deenergized and locked out.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to provide that no person
may perform any maintenance on a mine belt conveyor unless it has
been deenergized and locked out.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from
the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would