Each holder of a permit of apprenticeship shall be known as an apprentice. Any miner holding a certificate of competency and qualification may have one person working with him or her, and under his or her supervision and direction, as an apprentice, for the purpose of learning and being instructed in the duties and calling of mining. Any mine foreman or fire boss or assistant mine foreman or fire boss may have three persons working with him or her under his or her supervision and direction, as apprentices, for the purpose of learning and being instructed in the duties and calling of mining: Provided, That a mine foreman, assistant mine foreman or fire boss supervising apprentices in an area where no coal is being produced or which is outby the working section may have as many as five apprentices under his or her supervision and direction, as apprentices, for the purpose of learning and being instructed in the duties and calling of mining or where the operator is using a production section under program for training of apprentice miners, approved by the board of miner training, education and certification.
Every apprentice working at a surface mine shall be at all times under the supervision and control of at least one person who holds a certificate of competency and qualification.
In all cases, it is the duty of every mine operator who employs apprentices to ensure that such persons are effectively supervised and to instruct such persons in safe mining practices. Each apprentice shall wear a red hat which identifies the apprentice as such while employed at or near a mine. No person shall be employed as an apprentice for a period in excess of eight months, except that in the event of illness or injury, time extensions shall be permitted as established by the director of the office of miners' health, safety and training.
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