The mining industry is a very intricate industry where many laws or bylaws are applicable. There is thousands of legal action cases that are mining related annually. With protection of employees and everyone that is involved in the industry it sometimes happens that most people aren’t aware of their rights while working at a mine. It is important to be informed of any legal rights or what they are entitled to while working in this risky industry. Here are a few important legal items that you might not know about the mining industry. Click here to read more about the history of mining.
The earliest mining legislation was set in place in 1981 where congress established that minimum ventilation requirements was important in underground coal mines and that children under the age of 12 were not allowed to work in the mining industry. Thankfully this law was brought in because it is quite a horror to imagine children working underground. It was also stipulated that in 1907 362 miners were killed in a coal mine explosion along with the 3000 miners that died in the year of 1907 which gives room for the new laws that were implemented. During that time mining was rather primitive.
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In 1910 it is said that congress set up the Bureau of Mines in the department of Interior. Mining methods were finally examined and safer practices were noted as important and something to implement. Preventing accidents in the mines became priority. Unfortunately it was said that the authorities didn’t have the right processes in place to supervise mining operations and health standards. In 1952 the Federal Coal Mine safety act was established by congress which brought forth annual inspections and mandatory safety rules and regulations. Click here to read more about this act.
More stringent standards were set up in 1969 and the inspections became more frequent and formal. In 1977 the Federal Mine Safety and health act was merged with the department of labor which once again made the act a higher priority. This ruling was based on over 2100 coal mines and 12500 non-metal mines which really made a difference in the industry allowing employees the peace of mind with safer working conditions. Since 1996 there have been around 478 reported coal mining incidents where employees got injured where more than half of them occurred in Kentucky and West Virginia. 1000 lives have been lost in mining since 1996. With new regulations it is mostly human error that causes these incidents.