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Section: 56.1000
Date: 08/25/2011
District: NC
Negligence: Low
Injury or Illness: No Likelihood
Injury or illness could be expected to be: No Lost Workdays
Significant and Substantial: No

Condition or Practice: The mine operator failed to notify MSHA of closure of mining activities at this mine site. The overburden stripping crew and equipment which was operating at this site has been relocated to another mine site. MSHA was notified the plant on site was shutdown on November 22, 2010 and that stripping of overburden commenced on January 07, 2011 at this site. The stripping crew ceased mining activities at this site on March 2, 2011 and no other mining activities are ongoing at this site at this time.

Action to Terminate: MSHA was verbally notified that the stripping crew was relocated and that no mining activities were on going at this site terminating the cited condition.

Why this concerns you: There are two reasons this citation is of concern:
1.) As is stated in the citation the Stripping Crew had ceased mining activities(removing overburden) at this site on March 02nd, the citation was written March 7th. The site operation itself was shutdown per notification to MSHA, again noted in the citation. If the site was not in operation and the Stripping Crew was in the process of moving and ceased operation, as stated in the citation, how can there be a hazard?
2.) Under normal operating procedures the notice of shutdown and change of location would be sent when the crew had completed the move and was preparing to start the mining process at the new location. At the time of the citation, there were still several pieces of equipment at the original location waiting to be tranported to the new job site. This was not an intentional oversight, the move had not been completed so notification of shutdown and startup would have been premature and inaccurate. Again, only a paper delay if that. Where is the hazard?
No miners were exposed to any danger or hazard, so where is the justification for the issuance of a citation???

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