Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 45.1. Mines and Mining
Chapter 14.3. Requirements Applicable to Underground Coal Mines
7/25/2021

Article 6. Transportation.

§ 45.1-161.133. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Haulage roads.

A. The roadbed, rails, joints, switches, frogs and other elements of the track of all haulage roads shall be constructed, installed and maintained in a manner that ensures their safe operation. In determining their safety, consideration shall be given to the speed of equipment, and type of haulage operations conducted on the haulage roads.

B. Haulage tracks shall be kept free of accumulations of coal spillage and debris and water shall not be allowed to accumulate over the top of the rail.

C. Off-track haulage equipment operators shall observe haulage roads for hazardous conditions during the course of travel and shall promptly correct or report to the mine foreman any hazardous condition observed.

D. Off-track haulage roads shall be maintained reasonably free of bottom irregularities, excess spillage, debris, wet or muddy conditions that make controlling off-track equipment difficult, and accumulations of water over such areas of haulage roads and in such depths that water could enter electrical panels and create potentially hazardous conditions.

E. Uninsulated trolley lines shall not be used or installed in underground coal mines without approval of the Chief.

Code 1950, § 45-69.4; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-70; 1994, c. 28; 1996, c. 774; 1999, c. 256; 2011, cc. 826, 862.

§ 45.1-161.134. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Track switches and rails.

A. All track switches shall be provided with properly installed throws, latches, and bridle bars.

B. All track switches, other than those in rooms and in entry development, shall be equipped with properly installed guardrails.

C. All switch throws and stands shall be installed on the side of the track where clearance is provided.

D. Rails shall be secured at all joints by plates or welds.

Code 1950, §§ 45-69.1, 45-69.4; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, §§ 45.1-70, 45.1-73; 1979, c. 315; 1983, c. 70; 1985, c. 302; 1994, c. 28; 1999, c. 256.

§ 45.1-161.135. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Clearance on haulage roads.

A. Track haulage roads in entries, rooms, and crosscuts shall have a continuous clearance on one side of at least 24 inches from the farthest projection of moving traffic. The clearance shall be kept free of any obstruction to a height permitted by the height of the coal seam. When not possible to maintain such clearance, close clearance signs shall be posted inby and outby the affected area.

B. Track haulage roads in entries, rooms, and crosscuts shall have a continuous clearance, on the side opposite the clearance required by subsection A, of at least six inches from the farthest projection of moving traffic. When not possible to maintain such clearance, close clearance signs shall be posted inby and outby the affected area.

C. Haulage roads where trolley lines are used shall have the clearance required by subsection A on the side of the track opposite the trolley lines. This requirement shall not apply where the trolley lines are 6 1/2 feet or more above the rail.

D. The clearance space on all track haulage roads shall be kept free of loose rock, loose coal, supplies, and other loose materials. If the clearance space exceeds 24 inches, not more than 24 inches of the clearance space shall be required to be kept free of such materials.

E. All parallel tracks shall be installed so as to provide a clearance of at least 24 inches between the outermost projections of passing traffic.

F. Ample clearance shall be provided (i) at conveyor loading heads, (ii) at conveyor control panels, and (iii) along conveyor lines.

G. Belt conveyors shall be equipped with control switches to automatically stop the driving motor in the event the belt is stopped by slipping on the driving pulley, by breakage or other accident.

Code 1950, §§ 45-14.1, 45-69.5; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, §§ 45.1-71, 45.1-89; 1974, c. 323; 1978, c. 118; 1984, c. 590; 1985, c. 500; 1994, c. 28; 1996, c. 774; 1999, c. 256; 2005, c. 3.

§ 45.1-161.136. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Conveyor crossings.

Suitable facilities for crossing conveyors shall be provided where it is necessary for miners to cross conveyors regularly.

Code 1950, § 45-69.5; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-71; 1994, c. 28.

§ 45.1-161.137. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Shelter holes.

A. Track haulage roads shall have shelter holes at intervals not to exceed the interval permitted for crosscuts. Except at points where more than six feet of side clearance, measured from the rail, is maintained and at room switches, shelter holes shall be provided at manually operated doors and at switch throws.

B. Except for shelter holes at underground slope landings where men pass and cars are handled, (i) the depth of shelter holes shall not be less than five feet, (ii) the width of shelter holes shall not be greater than four feet unless a room neck or crosscut width exceeding four feet is used as a shelter hole, and (iii) height of shelter holes shall not be less than six feet or, if the height of the traveling space is less than six feet, as high as the traveling space.

C. Shelter holes at underground slope landings where men pass and cars are handled shall be at least (i) ten feet in depth, (ii) four feet in width, and (iii) six feet in height.

D. Shelter holes shall be kept free of refuse, loose roof, and other obstructions.

Code 1950, § 45-69.5; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-71; 1994, c. 28.

§ 45.1-161.138. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Refuge from moving traffic.

Upon the approach of moving traffic, miners not engaged in haulage operations shall take refuge in shelter holes or other places of safety.

Code 1950, § 45-69.5; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-71; 1994, c. 28.

§ 45.1-161.139. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Inspection of underground equipment.

Once a week or more often if necessary, the mine foreman or a certified person shall inspect electrical and diesel transportation equipment to assure its safe operating condition. Such equipment located on the surface shall be inspected as often as necessary but at least monthly. Such person shall correct any defect found during the inspection. A record of such examination shall be maintained.

1966, c. 594, § 45.1-85; 1978, c. 118; 1993, c. 442; 1994, c. 28; 1996, c. 774.

§ 45.1-161.140. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Maintenance of equipment.

Locomotives, mine cars, shuttle cars, supply cars, conveyors, self-propelled mobile equipment, and all other equipment shall be maintained in a safe operating condition.

Code 1950, § 45-69.3; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-72; 1994, c. 28; 1999, c. 256.

§ 45.1-161.141. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Self-propelled equipment.

A. All self-propelled mobile transportation and haulage equipment for use underground shall be equipped with safe seating facilities for the person operating the equipment unless equipped for remote control operation. Where seating facilities are provided on self-propelled mobile equipment, the person operating such equipment shall be seated before the equipment is put into motion.

B. All track-mounted equipment shall be equipped with proper lifting devices, for the rerailing of such equipment.

C. An audible warning device and headlights shall be provided on each locomotive, shuttle car and any other self-propelled mobile transportation and haulage equipment.

D. A trip light capable of being seen for at least 300 feet underground shall be used on the rear of trips pulled and on the front of pushed trips and trips lowered in slopes; however, trip lights need not be used where locomotives are used on each end of a trip.

E. Effective means, including but not limited to trailing locomotives, slides, skids or drags shall be used during track haulage to ensure safe control is maintained when grades create a potential hazard.

F. Where block signals are used, procedures shall be established in writing to safely control traffic movement within the system and shall be posted and reviewed with all mine personnel.

Code 1950, §§ 45-69.1, 45-69.3; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, §§ 45.1-72, 45.1-73; 1979, c. 315; 1983, c. 70; 1985, c. 302; 1994, c. 28; 1996, c. 774; 1999, c. 256.

§ 45.1-161.142. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Pushing cars.

Pushing cars on main haulage roads shall be prohibited except (i) where necessary to push cars from sidetracks located near the working section to the producing entries and rooms, (ii) where necessary to clear switches and sidetracks, and (iii) on the approach to cages, slopes and surface inclines. However, where rail transportation systems are utilized and it becomes necessary to routinely push cars, the operator shall develop procedures for coordination and control of rail traffic, such as provisions of effective trip lights or other warning devices, and other safety precautions specific to the mine. These procedures shall be subject to approval of the Chief.

Code 1950, § 45-69.1; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-73; 1979, c. 315; 1983, c. 70; 1985, c. 302; 1994, c. 28; 1996, c. 774.

§ 45.1-161.143. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Transportation of material.

A. Equipment or material being transported shall be loaded in a manner to protect the operator and other personnel from sliding equipment or material.

B. Materials and supplies not necessary for the operation of self-propelled mobile equipment shall not be transported on such equipment, except for when the mobile equipment is designed to carry such materials or supplies and a hazard is not created. Only small hand tools and supplies which do not create hazards may be transported in the same compartment of personnel carriers where miners are seated.

Code 1950, § 45-69.1; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-73; 1979, c. 315; 1983, c. 70; 1985, c. 302; 1994, c. 28; 1999, c. 256.

§ 45.1-161.144. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Securing cars.

A. Standing cars on any track, unless held effectively by brakes, shall be properly blocked or spragged.

B. Positive-acting stopblocks or derails shall be used where necessary to protect miners from danger of runaway rail equipment. Derails shall be located where grades at the entrance and other locations in the mine create potential collision hazards.

C. Safety chains, steel ropes, or other effective devices capable of holding the load shall be used to prevent runaway man-trip or other supply cars.

Code 1950, § 45-69.1; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-73; 1979, c. 315; 1983, c. 70; 1985, c. 302; 1994, c. 28; 1996, c. 774; 1999, c. 256.

§ 45.1-161.145. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Riding on cars.

A. No person other than the motorman and trip rider shall ride on a locomotive, unless authorized by the mine foreman.

B. No person shall ride on loaded cars or between cars of any trip.

C. No person shall get on or off moving locomotives or cars being moved by locomotives.

D. No person shall be allowed to ride on top of self-propelled mobile equipment.

Code 1950, § 45-69.1; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-73; 1979, c. 315; 1983, c. 70; 1985, c. 302; 1994, c. 28; 1996, c. 774.

§ 45.1-161.146. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Back-poling.

Back-poling shall be prohibited except (i) at places where the trolley pole cannot be reversed or (ii) when going up extremely steep grades. In all circumstances, back-poling shall occur only at very slow speed.

Code 1950, § 45-69.1; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-73; 1979, c. 315; 1983, c. 70; 1985, c. 302; 1994, c. 28.

§ 45.1-161.147. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Operation of equipment.

A. Operators of self-propelled haulage equipment shall face in the direction of travel except when the equipment is being loaded and is under the boom of the loading equipment.

B. Track haulage cars which require coupling and uncoupling shall be equipped with automatic couplers or devices designed to allow coupling and uncoupling without exposing miners between equipment. Specialty cars designed with safe clearance when connecting to other cars are excluded from the provisions of this subsection.

C. Persons operating self-propelled haulage equipment shall sound a warning before starting such equipment and on approaching curves, sidetracks, doors, curtains, manway crossings, or any other place where persons are or are likely to be.

D. All rail equipment shall be operated at speeds which are safe for the condition of the rail installation, grades and clearances encountered. When rail equipment is being operated at normal safe speeds, a distance of 300 feet shall be maintained from the rear of other rail equipment in operation except trailing locomotives that are an integral part of the trip.

E. All persons shall stand in the clear during switching operations.

F. No two pieces of self-propelled mobile mining equipment traveling in opposite directions inside a coal mine shall be allowed to pass each other while both are in motion on the same haulage road unless a minimum of 24 inches is maintained between the vehicles.

Code 1950, § 45-69.1; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-73; 1979, c. 315; 1983, c. 70; 1985, c. 302; 1994, c. 28; 1996, c. 774; 1999, c. 256; 2005, c. 3.

§ 45.1-161.148. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Dispatchers.

Where a dispatcher is employed to control trips, traffic under his jurisdiction shall be moved only at his direction. The dispatcher shall be stationed on the surface at the mine.

Code 1950, § 45-69.1; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-73; 1979, c. 315; 1983, c. 70; 1985, c. 302; 1994, c. 28.

§ 45.1-161.149. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Availability of man-trips.

The operator or his agent shall maintain a man-trip or other equipment suitable for providing reasonable access within a reasonable time to areas of the mine where miners are working and where transportation is ordinarily provided. The suitability of the equipment, and the reasonableness of the time required to reach such areas of the mine, shall be determined by the Chief.

1994, c. 28.

§ 45.1-161.150. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Man-trips.

A. Man-trips operated by means of locomotives shall be pulled and at safe speeds consistent with the condition of roads and type of equipment used, and shall be so controlled that they can be stopped within the limits of visibility.

B. Each man-trip shall be under the charge of an authorized person and shall be operated independently of any loaded trip.

C. Man-trips shall be maintained in safe operating condition, and in sufficient number to prevent becoming overloaded.

D. No person shall ride under a trolley wire other than in suitably covered man-cars. Covered man-cars shall not be required under trolley wires that are guarded or positioned in accordance with subsection F of § 45.1-161.187.

E. Other than small hand tools carried on the person, supplies or tools shall not be transported in the same car or cage with miners on any man-trip, except in special compartments in such cars.

F. Miners shall not board or leave moving man-trip cars. Miners shall remain seated while in moving cars, and shall proceed in an orderly manner to and from man-trips.

Code 1950, § 45-69.2; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-74; 1985, c. 296; 1994, c. 28; 1996, c. 774; 1999, c. 256.

§ 45.1-161.151. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Man-trip loading and unloading areas.

A. Areas used regularly for loading or unloading man-trips or man-cages shall be kept clear, free of obstructions, and with ample clearance for moving equipment. Miners shall remain in such area until the man-trip or man-cage is ready to load.

B. Trolley and power wires shall be guarded effectively at areas where persons regularly load or unload from man-trips or man-cages where there is a possibility of any person coming in contact with energized electric wiring while boarding or leaving the man-trip.

Code 1950, § 45-69.2; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-74; 1985, c. 296; 1994, c. 28; 1996, c. 774; 1999, c. 256.

§ 45.1-161.152. (Repealed effective October 1, 2021) Transporting miners by belts.

A. When belts are used for transporting miners, such belts shall be free of loose materials, and a minimum clearance of at least eighteen inches shall be maintained between the belt and the roof or crossbars, projecting equipment, cap pieces, overhead cables, wiring, and other objects. Belts used for transporting miners shall be equipped with emergency stop cords for their entire length.

B. The belt speed shall not exceed (i) 250 feet per minute while miners are being transported where the clearance between the belt and overhead roof or projections is between eighteen inches and twenty-four inches and (ii) 300 feet per minute where the overhead clearance is twenty-four inches or more. The use of conveyor belts to transport miners shall be prohibited if the clearance between the belt and overhead is less than eighteen inches. Such belt shall be stopped while miners are boarding or leaving.

C. The space between miners riding on a belt line shall be not less than five feet.

D. Adequate clearance and proper illumination shall be provided where miners board or leave conveyor belts.

Code 1950, § 45-69.2; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-74; 1985, c. 296; 1994, c. 28; 1996, c. 774; 1999, c. 256.