(a) The Office of Miners' Health, Safety and Training shall prescribe and establish a course of instruction in mine safety and particularly in dangers incident to employment in mines and in mining laws and rules, which course of instruction shall be successfully completed within twelve weeks after any person is first employed as a miner. It is further the duty and responsibility of the Office of Miners' Health, Safety and Training to see that the course is given to all persons as above provided after their first being employed in any mine in this state. In addition to other enforcement actions available to the director, upon a finding by the director of the existence of a pattern of conduct creating a hazardous condition at a mine, the director shall notify the Board of Miners' Training, Education and Certification, which shall cause additional training to occur at the mine addressing such safety issue or issues identified by the director, pursuant to article seven of this chapter.
(b) It is the duty of the mine foreman or the assistant mine foreman of every coal mine in this state to see that every person employed to work in the mine is, before beginning work therein, instructed in the particular danger incident to his or her work in the mine, and furnished a copy of the mining laws and rules of the mine. It is the duty of every mine operator who employs apprentices, as that term is used in sections three and four, article eight of this chapter to ensure that the apprentices are effectively supervised with regard to safety practices and to instruct apprentices in safe mining practices. Every apprentice shall work under the direction of the mine foreman or his or her assistant mine foreman and they are responsible for his or her safety. The mine foreman or assistant mine foreman may delegate the supervision of an apprentice to an experienced miner, but the foreman and his or her assistant mine foreman remain responsible for the apprentice. During the first one hundred twenty days of employment in a mine, the apprentice shall work within sight and sound of the mine foreman, assistant mine foreman, or an experienced miner, and in a location that the mine foreman, assistant mine foreman or experienced miner can effectively respond to cries for help of the apprentice. The location shall be on the same side of any belt, conveyor or mining equipment.
(c) Persons whose duties require them to use a approved methane detecting deviceor other approved methane detectors shall be examined at least annually as to their competence by a qualified official from the Office of Miners' Health, Safety and Training and a record of the examination shall be kept by the operator and the office. Approved methane detecting devices and other approved methane detectors shall be given proper maintenance and shall be tested before each working shift. Each operator shall provide for the proper maintenance and care of the permissible approved methane detecting device or any other approved device for detecting methane and oxygen deficiency by a person trained in the maintenance, and, before each shift, care shall be taken to ensure that the approved methane detecting device or other device is in a permissible condition and maintained according to manufacturer's specifications. Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2012 1st Special Session