Code of Virginia

Code of Virginia
Title 45.1. Mines and Mining
6/19/2019

Article 10. Explosives and Blasting.

§ 45.1-161.284. Surface storage of explosives and detonators.

A. Separate surface magazines shall be provided for the storage of explosives and detonators.

B. Surface magazines for storing and distributing explosives in amounts exceeding 150 pounds shall be:

1. Reasonably bulletproof and constructed of incombustible material or covered with fire-resistive material. The roofs of magazines so located that it is impossible to fire bullets directly through the roof from the ground, need not be bulletproof, but where it is possible to fire bullets directly through them, roofs shall be made bullet-resistant by material construction, or by a ceiling that forms a tray containing not less than a four-inch thickness of sand, or by other methods;

2. Provided with doors constructed of three-eighth inch steel plate lined with a two-inch thickness of wood, or the equivalent;

3. Provided with dry floors made of wood or other nonsparking material and have no metal exposed inside the magazine;

4. Provided with suitable warning signs so located that a bullet passing directly through the face of a sign will not strike the magazine;

5. Provided with properly screened ventilators;

6. Equipped with no openings except for entrance and ventilation;

7. Kept locked securely when unattended; and

8. Electrically bonded and grounded, if constructed of metal.

C. Surface magazines for storing detonators need not be bulletproof, but they shall be in accordance with other provisions for storing explosives.

D. Explosives in amounts of 150 pounds or less or 5,000 detonators or less shall be stored in accordance with the preceding standards or in separate locked box-type magazines. Box-type magazines may also be used as distributing magazines when quantities do not exceed those mentioned. Box-type magazines shall be constructed strongly of two-inch hardwood or the equivalent. Metal magazines shall be lined with nonsparking material. No magazine shall be placed in a building containing oil, grease, gasoline, wastepaper or other highly flammable material; nor shall a magazine be placed within twenty feet of a stove, furnace, open fire or flame.

E. The location of magazines shall be not less than 300 feet from any mine opening. However, in the event that a magazine cannot be practicably located at such a distance, the magazine may be located less than 300 feet from a mine opening, if it is sufficiently barricaded and approved by the Chief. Unless approved by the Chief, magazines shall not be located closer to occupied buildings, public roads, or passenger railways than allowed in the "American Table of Distances for Storage of Explosive Materials" published by the Institute of Makers of Explosives.

F. The supply kept in distribution magazines shall be limited to approximately a forty-eight hour supply, and such supplies of explosives and detonators may be distributed from the same magazine, if separated by at least a four-inch substantially fastened hardwood partition or the equivalent.

G. The area surrounding magazines for not less than twenty-five feet in all directions shall be kept free of rubbish, dry grass or other materials of a combustible nature.

H. If the explosives magazine is illuminated electrically, the lamps shall be of vapor-proof type, installed and wired so as to present minimum fire and contact hazards.

I. Only nonmetallic tools shall be used for opening wooden containers. Extraneous materials shall not be stored in an explosives or detonator magazine.

J. Smoking, carrying smokers' articles or open flames shall be prohibited in or near any magazine.

Code 1950, § 45-53.2; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-44; 1978, c. 729; 1994, c. 28; 2010, cc. 809, 857.

§ 45.1-161.285. Misfires.

A. Misfires shall be reported promptly to the mine foreman and no other work shall be performed in the blasting area until the hazard has been corrected. A waiting period of at least fifteen minutes shall elapse before anyone returns to the misfired holes. If explosives are suspected of burning in a hole, all persons affected shall move to a safe location for the longer of one hour or until the danger has passed. When such failure involves electronic detonators, the blasting cable shall be disconnected from the source of power and the battery ends short-circuited before electric connections are examined.

B. Explosives shall be removed by firing a separate charge at least two feet away from, and parallel to, the misfired charge or by washing the stemming and the charge from the borehole with water, or by inserting and firing a new primer after the stemming has been washed out.

C. A very careful search of the blasting area, and if necessary, of the coal after it reaches the tipple shall be made after blasting a misfired hole to recover any undetonated explosive.

D. The handling of a misfired shot shall be under the direct supervision of the foreman or an authorized person designated by him.

Code 1950, § 45-53.7; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-50; 1994, c. 28; 1999, c. 256.

§ 45.1-161.286. Minimum blasting practices.

A. When explosives are in use on the surface and an electrical storm approaches, all persons shall be removed from such blast area until the storm has passed.

B. In accordance with the standards set forth in § 45.1-161.255 the Chief shall promulgate regulations regarding the safe storage, transportation, handling, and use of blasting agents and other explosives.

Code 1950, §§ 45-53.1, 45-53.5; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, §§ 45.1-48, 45.1-53.1; 1978, c. 729; 1981, c. 179; 1984, c. 229; 1993, c. 442; 1994, c. 28; 1996, c. 774.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of these sections may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.

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