Daily Rules, Proposed Rules, and Notices of the Federal Government
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44 U.S.C. 3507(a)(1)(D).
Each operator of a surface coal mine is required by Regulations 30 CFR 77.1000 to establish and follow a ground control plan that is consistent with prudent engineering design and that will ensure safe working conditions. The mine operator is required by § 77.1000-1 to file the ground control plan under § 77.1000 for highwalls, pits, and spoil banks with the appropriate MSHA District Manager. The mining methods employed by the operator are selected to ensure highwall, pit, and spoil bank stability. In the event of a highwall failure or material dislodgment, there may be very little time to escape possible injury; therefore, preventive measures must be taken. Each plan is based on the type of strata expected to be encountered, the height and angle of highwalls and spoil banks, and the equipment to be used at the mine. The plan is used to show how the mine operator will maintain safe conditions around the highwalls, pits, and spoil banks. Each plan is reviewed by the MSHA to ensure highwalls, pits, and spoil banks are maintained in a safe condition through the use of sound engineering design.
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