Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 45.2. Mines, Minerals, and Energy
Chapter 9. Requirements Applicable to Surface Coal Mines
9/29/2022

Article 1. General Provisions.

§ 45.2-900. Scope of chapter.

This chapter applies to the operation of any surface coal mine in the Commonwealth and supplements the provisions of Chapter 5 (§ 45.2-500 et seq.).

1994, c. 28, § 45.1-161.253; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 387.

§ 45.2-901. Regulations governing conditions and practices at surface coal mines.

A. The Chief may, after consultation with the Virginia Coal Mine Safety Board and in accordance with the provisions of the Administrative Process Act (§ 2.2-4000 et seq.), adopt regulations necessary to ensure safe and healthy working conditions in surface coal mines in the Commonwealth. Such regulations governing surface coal mines shall relate to:

1. Safety and health standards for the protection of the life, health, and property of, and the prevention of injuries to, persons involved in or likely to be affected by any surface coal mining. Such regulations shall include standards for the control of dust concentration levels; the installation, maintenance, and use of electrical devices, equipment, cables, and wires; fire protection; the use and storage of explosives; hoistings; drilling; loading and haulage areas; the training of surface miners; the preparation of responses to emergencies; examinations of conditions at a surface mine site; and reporting requirements;

2. The storage or disposal of any matter or material that is (i) extracted or disturbed as the result of a surface coal mining operation or (ii) used in the surface coal mining operation or for the refinement or preparation of the material that is extracted from the surface coal mining operation, so that such matter or material does not threaten the health, safety, or property of miners or the general public; and

3. The operation, inspection, operating condition, and movement of drilling equipment and machines to protect the health, safety, and property of miners and the general public.

B. The Chief shall adopt no regulation establishing a requirement for the operation of, or for conditions at, a surface coal mine that is inconsistent with any requirement established by the Act.

Code 1950, §§ 45-8, 45-84; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-104; 1972, c. 784; 1974, c. 323; 1975, c. 520; 1978, c. 120; 1982, c. 118; 1990, c. 963; 1994, c. 28, § 45.1-161.254; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 387.

§ 45.2-902. Standards for regulations.

In adopting regulations pursuant to § 45.2-901, the Chief shall consider:

1. Standards utilized and generally recognized by the surface coal mining industry;

2. Standards established by recognized professional coal mining organizations and groups;

3. Standards established by federal mine safety laws;

4. Research, demonstrations, experiments, and such other information that is available regarding the maintenance of the highest degree of safety protection, including the latest available scientific data in the field, the technical feasibility of the standards, and the experience gained under the Act and other mine safety laws; and

5. Such other criteria necessary for the protection of the safety and health of miners and other persons or property likely to be affected by surface coal mines or related operations.

Code 1950, §§ 45-8, 45-84; 1954, c. 191; 1966, c. 594, § 45.1-104; 1972, c. 784; 1974, c. 323; 1975, c. 520; 1978, c. 120; 1982, c. 118; 1990, c. 963; 1994, c. 28, § 45.1-161.255; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 387.