Steps Taken to Prevent Coal Mine Accidents

The provisions of Mines Act, 1952, Subordinate Rules and Regulations made thereunder are being administered for ensuring the safety in coal mines by Directorate General of Mines Safety (DGMS).

Coalmine owners are responsible for implementing these provisions.

These provisions are reviewed from time to time by DGMS taking inputs from experience of officials of DGMS, industry & academic institutions and the recommendations of the tripartite committees.

To check the recurrence of such incidents in future, the following steps have been taken by the Government:

(i)     Safety audit of all the coalmines has been taken up.

(ii)   Strengthening of Internal Safety Organisations (ISO) in coalmines/coal companies.

(iii) To promote and propagate safety awareness in mines, National Safety Awards (Mines), National Conference on Safety in Mines is organized by DGMS. The recommendations of National Conference on Safety in Mines is very helpful in suggesting measures required for safety of mine workers.

(iv)  Workers participation and sensitization in matters of safety are ensured through training in safety and by initiatives like celebration of safety week and safety campaigns, etc.

(v)    Safety training programmes are organized for Managers and Supervisors for improving safety standards in mines.

(vi)  CIL has taken up a training programme with “Safety in Mines Testing and Research Station (SIMTARS)”, Govt of Queensland, Australia for training of trainers.

(vii) DGMS facilitates introduction of Risk Assessment Techniques aimed at elimination of risks and to ensure safety of workmen.

(viii) DGMS facilitates introduction of standard operating procedures to avoid unsafe practices in mines.

(ix) A special safety awareness campaign has been launched to increase awareness of mine workers with the motto: ‘Safety is My Responsibility’.

(x) From time to time, DGMS issues guidelines for safer operations in identified thrust areas.

(xi)  Risk based inspection system through Shram Suvidha Portal has been implemented for coal mines.

(xii) Adoption of online safety monitoring systems,  establishment of geo-technical cells, installation of gas chromatographs for monitoring and analysing underground mine gases, installation of proximity warning devices to avoid collision of heavy earth moving machinery, environmental tele-monitoring systems in all degree-III gassy mines, slope monitoring systems for overburden benches and OB dumps etc. are some of the other important steps taken by coal companies for improving safety of miners and mining operations in the coal mines.