Administrative Code

Virginia Administrative Code
11/27/2021

Part I. General Administrative Provisions—Surface and Underground

4VAC25-40-10. Definitions.

The following words and terms when used in this chapter shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

"Abandoned mine" means a mine in which all work has stopped on the mine premises and where an office with a responsible person in charge is no longer maintained at the mine.

"Abandoned workings" means deserted mine areas in which further work is not intended.

"Acceptable" means tested and found to be appropriate for a specific purpose by a nationally recognized agency.

"ACGIH" means the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists.

"Angle of repose" means the maximum slope or angle at which material remains stable.

"Auxiliary fan" means a fan used to deliver air to a working place off the main airstream, generally used with ventilation tubing.

"Barricaded" means physically obstructed to hinder or prevent the passage of persons or vehicles.

"Blast area" means the area of the mine in which concussion or flying material can reasonably be expected to cause injury during detonation.

"Blast site" means the 50-foot perimeter around boreholes being loaded, or 30 feet if demarcated by a barricade, and the 180° free-face area for a distance of at least four times the average depth of the boreholes being loaded.

"Bridle" means a cable or chain used to support a work platform in a raised position with more than three connection points.

"Burden" means the distance in feet between rows of boreholes or between the open face and boreholes.

"Company official" means a member of the company supervisory or technical staff.

"Competent person" means a person having abilities and experience that fully qualify him to perform the duty to which he is assigned.

"Confined space" means an enclosed area that is large enough for an employee to enter fully and perform his assigned work but is not designed for continuous occupancy by the employee and has a limited or restricted means of entry or exit. These spaces may include storage bins, hoppers, silos, tanks, vaults, and other similar areas.

"Department" means the Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy.

"Director" means the Director of the Division of Mineral Mining.

"Distribution box" means an apparatus with an enclosure through which an electric circuit is carried to one or more cables from a single incoming feedline, each cable circuit being connected through individual overcurrent protective devices.

"Division" means the Division of Mineral Mining.

"Escapeway" means a passageway by which persons may leave if the ordinary exit is obstructed.

"Face" or "bank" means that part of any mine where excavating is progressing or was last done.

"Flash point" means the minimum temperature at which sufficient vapor is released to form a flammable vapor-air mixture.

"Free-face" means the face area of a quarry bench to be blasted.

"Flyrock" means any uncontrolled material generated by the effect of a blast that was hazardous to persons, or to property not owned or controlled by the operator.

"Heavy duty mobile equipment" means any equipment used for loading, hauling, or grading and not normally intended for highway use.

"Hoist" means a power-driven windlass or drum used for raising ore, rock, or other material from a mine, and for lowering or raising persons and material.

"Lay" means the distance parallel to the axis of the rope in which a strand makes one complete turn about the axis of the rope.

"Loaded" means containing explosives, blasting agents, or detonators.

"Main fan" means a fan that controls the entire airflow of the mine or the airflow of one of the major air circuits.

"Major electrical installation" means an assemblage of stationary electrical equipment for the generation, transmission, distribution, or conversion of electrical power.

"Mine opening" means any opening or entrance from the surface into a mine.

"Mine vehicle" means any vehicle on the mine site that is utilized by the mine operator or contractors performing excavation, maintenance, or construction at the mine.

"Misfire" means the partial or complete failure of a blast to detonate as planned.

"MSHA" means the Mine Safety and Health Administration.

"Occupational injury" means any injury to a miner which occurs at a mine for which medical treatment is administered, or which results in death or loss of consciousness, inability to perform all job duties on any day after an injury, temporary assignment to other duties, or transfer to another job as specified in the 30 CFR Part 50.2.

"Overburden" means material of any nature, consolidated or unconsolidated, that overlies a deposit of useful materials or ores that are to be mined.

"Potable" means fit for human consumption and, where required by the Code of Virginia, approved by the Virginia Department of Health.

"Powder chest" means a substantial, nonconductive portable container equipped with a lid and used at blasting sites for explosives other than blasting agents.

"Primer" means a cartridge or package of explosives which contains a detonator or detonating cord.

"Refuse" means mineral processing waste, tailings, silts, sediments, or slimes.

"Rollover protection" means a framework, safety canopy or similar protection for the operator when equipment overturns and which is acceptable for use on that particular type of equipment.

"Safety fuse" means a train of powder enclosed in cotton, jute yarn, and water-proofing compounds, which burns at a uniform rate, used for firing a cap containing the detonating compound which in turn sets off the explosive charge.

"Safety hazard" means any condition, function, or circumstance which may reasonably be expected to cause or assist an accident.

"Scaled distance (Ds)" means the actual distance (D) in feet divided by the square root of the maximum explosive weight (W) in pounds that is detonated per delay period for delay intervals of eight milliseconds or greater; or the total weight of explosive in pounds that is detonated within an interval less than eight milliseconds.

"Scaling" means removal of insecure material from a face or highwall.

"Shaft" means a vertical or inclined shaft, slope, incline, or winze.

"Stemming" means that inert material placed in a borehole after the explosive charge for the purpose of confining the explosion gases in the borehole or that inert material used to separate the explosive charges (decks) in decked holes.

"Substantial construction" means construction of such strength, material, and workmanship that the object will withstand all reasonable shock, wear, and usage to which it will be subjected.

"Suitable" means that which fits and has the qualities or qualifications to meet a given purpose, occasion, condition, function, or circumstance.

"Switch" means a device used to complete or disconnect an electrical circuit.

"Travelway" means a passage, walk or way regularly used and designated for persons to go from one place to another.

"Wet drilling" means the continuous application of water through the control hole of hollow drill steel to the bottom of the drill hole.

Statutory Authority

§§ 45.1-161.3, 45.1-161.294, and 45.1-161.305 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR480-05-1.2 § 1.1, eff. July 19, 1989; amended, Virginia Register Volume 14, Issue 17, eff. July 1, 1998; Volume 35, Issue 4, eff. November 30, 2018.

4VAC25-40-20. (Repealed.)

Historical Notes

Derived from VR480-05-1.2 § 1.2 A, eff. July 19, 1989; repealed, Virginia Register Volume 14, Issue 17, eff. July 1, 1998.

4VAC25-40-25. Purpose and authority.

The purpose of this chapter is to provide for the protection of persons and property on and around mineral mines. The chapter works with the Virginia Mineral Mine Safety Act (§ 45.1-161.292:1 et seq.) of the Code of Virginia (as shown in Mineral Mine Safety Laws of Virginia, 2005 edition). Refer to the Act for other definitions and requirements related to this chapter.

Statutory Authority

§§ 45.1-161.3, 45.1-161.294 and 45.1-161.305 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 14, Issue 17, eff. July 1, 1998; amended, Virginia Register Volume 25, Issue 20, eff. July 8, 2009.

4VAC25-40-30. (Repealed.)

Historical Notes

Derived from VR480-05-1.2 § 1.2 B, eff. July 19, 1989; repealed, Virginia Register Volume 14, Issue 17, eff. July 1, 1998.

4VAC25-40-40. Certification.

Any person who is responsible for mining or blasting activities shall be certified by the department and governed by the Certification Requirements for Mineral Mining, 4VAC25-35.

Statutory Authority

§§ 45.1-161.3, 45.1-161.294 and 45.1-161.305 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR480-05-1.2 § 1.2 C, eff. July 19, 1989; amended, Virginia Register Volume 14, Issue 17, eff. July 1, 1998; Volume 28, Issue 21, eff. July 18, 2012.

4VAC25-40-50. Reporting of accidents and injuries by the operator.

A. Operators shall report any accident involving serious personal injury or death to any person on the mine property to the division by the quickest available means, and the scene of the accident shall not be disturbed until an investigation is conducted by the division. For accidents where the injured person is transported to a hospital, but confinement is not expected, the operator may either preserve the scene or collect relevant physical data and photographs as specified by the division. The division shall be notified immediately upon learning that the injured person has been admitted to the hospital for medical treatment. Head injuries that result in loss of consciousness at the site shall be reported immediately.

B. Operators shall report all other accidents and occupational injuries to the division within 10 days of their occurrence. Operators shall keep on file a report of all accidents and occupational injuries occurring on the mine property for review by the division mine inspector. Such records shall be kept for three years.

Statutory Authority

§§ 45.1-161.3, 45.1-161.294, and 45.1-161.305 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR480-05-1.2 § 1.2 D, eff. July 19, 1989; amended, Virginia Register Volume 14, Issue 17, eff. July 1, 1998; Volume 35, Issue 4, eff. November 30, 2018.

4VAC25-40-60. (Repealed.)

Historical Notes

Derived from VR480-05-1.2 § 1.2 E, eff. July 19, 1989; repealed, Virginia Register Volume 14, Issue 17, eff. July 1, 1998.

4VAC25-40-70. Approval procedure.

A. When approval by the Director of the Division of Mineral Mining is required, the mine operator shall submit written proposed standards for the person, equipment, material, or practice required by the regulation to the Division of Mineral Mining office.

B. The director will review the submittal, request additional material or corrections as required and notify the mine operator in writing of his determination within 30 days.

Statutory Authority

§§ 45.1-161.3, 45.1-161.294 and 45.1-161.305 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR480-05-1.2 § 1.2 F, eff. July 19, 1989; amended, Virginia Register Volume 14, Issue 17, eff. July 1, 1998.

4VAC25-40-80. (Repealed.)

Historical Notes

Derived from VR480-05-1.2 § 1.2 G, eff. July 19, 1989; repealed, Virginia Register Volume 14, Issue 17, eff. July 1, 1998.

4VAC25-40-90. (Repealed.)

Historical Notes

Derived from VR480-05-1.2 § 1.2 G, eff. July 19, 1989; amended, Virginia Register Volume 14, Issue 17, eff. July 1, 1998; Volume 25, Issue 20, eff. July 8, 2009; repealed, Virginia Register Volume 35, Issue 4, eff. November 30, 2018.

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