Question : Accidents in coal mines

(a) whether any technical analysis has been performed to find out the causes of the accidents in the coal mines;
(b) if so, the details of the findings and the measures taken as a result thereof;
(c) the suitable measures taken in general to conduct study of the said circumstances and investigate landslides in mines;
(d) whether these mines are equipped with any automatic alarm for early warning of any landslides; and
(e) if so, the details thereof?

Answer given by the minister


(a) & (b): Yes Sir. Inquiries into all fatal accidents, major serious accidents and dangerous occurrences are conducted by Directorate General of Mines Safety (DGMS) officers to find out the causes and circumstances leading to the accidents/incidents in coal mines. As per the findings of the enquiries, suitable actions or measures are taken as per the provisions of the Mines Act, 1952 to prevent recurrence of such accidents or dangerous occurrences. The following measures taken:
i. Based on the analysis, technical circulars are issued from time to time to the industry.
ii. National Conference on Safety in Mines (NSC), a national level tripartite forum is organized periodically in which detailed deliberations on prevention of mine accidents and improving safety are made and the recommendations of NSC, are disseminated in the form of circulars and are reviewed periodically by different coal producing companies.
iii. Scientific studies are carried out with the help of reputed institutes/scientific bodies to find out safe working culture.
iv. Follow-up inspections are made periodically based on risk analysis.
v. Improvement notices under section 22A of the Mines Act, 1952 are issued.
vi. Penal actions/prosecution against the persons/officials found responsible for the accidents based on the enquiry findings of the report.
vii. Coal Mines Regulations, 2017 has been enforced, which provides for risk based safety Management Plan (SMP) and preparation of safe Operating Procedure (SOPS).
(c): The Coal Mines Regulations, 1957 was suitably amended incorporating provisions for conduct of scientific study for method of work, ultimate pit slope, dump slope & monitoring of slope stability, at opencast coalmines under Regulation 106 of the Coal Mines Regulations, 2017. All mines conduct Scientific Study, under these provisions of Coal Mines Regulations, 2017 before starting mechanized opencast working and work shall be carried out as per the recommendations of the Scientific Study reports. In case of landslides/slope failure, investigations are carried out and management are directed to conduct fresh Scientific Study & review the working parameters to prevent such slope failures.
Guidelines for systematic monitoring of slopes in coal and metalliferous Mines was circulated vide DGMS (Tech) Circular No. 02 of 2020 dated 09.01.2020 regarding real-time monitoring of slope stability.
(d)&(e): Yes, certain mines are provided with automatic alarm systems such as Slope Stability RADAR (SSR) for the early warning of slide at opencast mines. In other mines, regular monitoring of slope stability is carried out by using prisms and total stations.


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