PRT 110: Lesson 14 HAZWOPER

Lesson Plan


  • Describe the operating hazards found in the chemical industry.
  • Describe the HAZWOPER first responder, awareness level.
  • Describe the HAZWOPER first responder, operations level.
  • Describe emergency response.
  • Identify potential hazards encountered during an emergency situation and the impact each could have.
  • Describe the Incident Command System.
  • Describe a fall protection system
  • Describe the equipment used in fall protection.
  • Identify safe work practices used with fall protection.
  • Complete a fall protection inspection checklist.
  • Describe the proper cleaning and storage procedures associated with fall protection

Read & Watch

Read chapter 14 of the textbook. Watch the following videos:

History of HAZWOPER


OSHA HAZWOPER Training Requirements (29 CFR 1910.120)


Spill Response Training | 7 Steps to Spill Cleanup



  1. Complete the homework associated with the assigned reading.
  2. Complete the assigned activity.
  3. Complete the activity quiz.
  4. Complete the chapter quiz.

Activity Quiz

PRT 110: Lesson 10 Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Lesson Plan


  • Identify personal protective equipment found in a plant.
  • Describe when and how to use personal protective equipment.
  • Identify typical workplace hazards.
  • Discuss the methods of hazard exposure prevention.
  • Contrast emergency response and PPE.
  • Describe the four levels of personal protective equipment.
  • Describe the principles of hearing protection.
  • Identify PPE outerwear worn by technicians.
  • Explain the general limitations of PPE equipment.
  • Contrast engineering/environmental controls and PPE.
  • Explain the purpose of respiratory protection.
  • Describe air-purifying respirators.
  • Describe air-supplying respirators.
  • Describe air purifying, half-face respirators.
  • Describe air purifying, full-face respirators.
  • Describe an air supplying self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA)
  • Describe an air supplying hose line respirator
  • Explain the steps required to take care of and use a respirator.
  • Analyze and contrast the limitations of each type of respirator.
  • Review the procedures for donning and doffing air purifying respirators.

Read and Watch

Read chapter 10 of the textbook. Watch the following videos:

I could save a life today


Safety 101: Personal Protective Equipment


3M Respirator Fit Kit Test Video



  1. Complete the homework associated with the reading.
  2. Complete the activity assigned.
  3. Complete the activity quiz.
  4. Complete the chapter quiz.

Activity Quiz

PRT 110: Lesson 9 Safety Permit Systems

Lesson Plan


  • Describe the different types of permit systems found in the chemical processing industry. Describe hot work permits (CFR 29 1910.119).
  • Describe energy isolation and lockout/tagout (CFR 29 1910.147).
  • Analyze the confined space entry procedure (CFR 29 1910.146).
  • Review opening and blinding permits.
  • Utilize a permit to enter.
  • Describe an energy isolation permit.
  • Recognize an unplugging permit.
  • Describe cold work permits.

Read and Watch

Read chapter 9 of the textbook. Watch the following videos:

Permit Required Confined Space


Hotwork Welding – Safety Training Video Course –


Lockout Tagout Safety Training Video



  1. Complete the homework associated with the assigned reading.
  2. Complete the activity associated with the reading.
  3. Complete the survey associated with the activity.
  4. Complete the chapter quiz.

Activity Quiz

PRT 110: Lesson 1 Introduction to Process Safety

Lesson Plan


After studying this chapter, the student will be able to:

  • Describe the chemical processing industry.
  • Describe the significant events of the safety movement.
  • Classify the safety roles and responsibilities of process technicians.
  • Identify the basic principles of safety.
  • Describe the general safety rules used in the industry.
  • Explain the difference between the terms process safety and occupational safety and health.
  • Explain the key elements of safety.
  • Describe the basic elements of a hazard analysis.
  • Explain the typical permits used by the chemical processing industry.
  • List the various types of firefighting equipment.
  • Describe the principles associated with production, transportation, and storage of chemicals.
  • Describe the Occupational Safety and Health Act.
  • Describe Process Safety Management.
  • Identify the key elements of HAZCOM.

Read and Watch

Read Chapter 1 from the textbook.

Watch the following videos:



  • Complete the homework associated with the reading.
  • Complete the class activity.
  • Complete the activity quiz (below).
  • Complete the chapter quiz.

Activity Quiz

Respond to the questions below.

AMIT 129: Lesson 13 Chemical Hazards


Upon completion of this lesson students should be able to:

  • List the physical hazards of chemicals.
  • Explain the health hazards of chemicals.
  • Demonstrate how to use of Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS).
  • Explain the meaning of chemical label colors.

Reading & Lecture

Chemical Hazard

Any chemical that can cause illness, injury or an emergency

Chemical Hazards

  • Physical
  • Health


Know what you are working with and how to protect yourself and others.

Physical Hazard

  • Explosives
  • Compressed Gas
  • Flammable
  • Unstable
  • Water Reactive
  • Oxidizers
  • Can cause cancer
  • Are toxic
  • Cause harm to your skin, organs or nervous system
  • Corrosive- such as acids
  • Cause allergic reactions after repeated exposure

Standard Hazard Warning - Flame Standard Hazard Warning - Gas cylinder Standard Hazard Warning - Corrosion Standard Hazard Warning - Explosion Standard Hazard Warning - Flame over circle Standard Hazard Warning - Healthhazard Standard Hazard Warning - Skull Standard Hazard Warning - Environment

Hazard Communication Standard Pictograms as presented by OSHA



Physical hazards are:

  • Used only by trained employees
  • Stored in a safe manner
  • Never mixed with other  chemicals unless by an approved procedure

Chemicals can enter the body through:

  • Your lungs- if you breath fumes, mists or dust
  • Your skin- if liquid or dust touches or spills on you or splashes in your eyes
  • Your mouth- if you eat after handling chemicals
  • Accidental swallowing of chemicals
Chemical hazard entryways
Image license CC by Kemosabe Mộc Dương

Hazard Communication

  • Written information on hazards
  • Lists  Chemicals that is used and their hazard
  • System for ensuring chemical are labeled
  • Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for each chemical
  • Lists of responsible persons for the program
  • Safety training methods
  • Chemical safety information

Signs of PPE

  • Signs may be used to identify hazards and required protection
  • The information may also be on the manufacturer’s label

Material Safety Data Sheets

  • Reference that identifies chemical characteristics and hazards
  • Safety Data Sheets are available for ALL of the hazardous materials present in your work areas
  • Must be accessible to all employees whenever they are in their work area

NFPA labeling system diagram




AMIT 129: Lesson 9 Mine Fires and Fire Fighting


Upon completion of this lesson students should be able to:

  • Identify different types of fire.
  • Identify firefighting equipment.
  • Demonstrate use of a fire extinguisher.

Reading & Lecture

The Four Types of Fires

Fire Type A icon fire sign A Wood bases, cloth, paper, rubber, certain plastics
Fire Type B icon fire sign B Flammable liquids, gases, greases, petroleum products
Class C Fire icon fire sign C Electrical equipment
Class D Fire icon fire sign D Combustible metals


These fires occur with ordinary combustible material such as wood, pyritic ore, coal, cloth, paper or oil rags. These materials leave ashes after the fire, so you can associate Class A fires with Ashes. Class A fires are usually fought with water, which cools and dampens the fuel. Also, some special dry chemicals are used to quickly extinguish the flame and prevent reflash.


These fires are burning flammable liquids, such as gasoline, greases, hydraulic oil, diesel fuel, and lubricating oils. The fire occurs in the fumes over the surface of flammable and combustible liquids. Typical Class B fires occur with spills or pools of liquids found near rubber-tired vehicles, drills, bulk fuel storage areas, maintenance shops, and lube operations. Class B fires involve liquids that Boil. These fires are fought with dry chemicals, foam, vaporizing liquids, carbon dioxide and water fog.


These are electrical fires. Typical electric fires include electric motors (as used in fans), batteries, battery chargers, transformers, and circuit breakers. You can associate Class C fires with the electric Current. Class C fires are fought with non-conducting agents, such as dry chemicals, carbon dioxide, and vaporizing liquids. If the current is still on do not fight the fire with water or foam because these conduct electricity, and thereby pose another hazard to fire fighters. Once electricity is cut off the fire can be treated as a Class A or B fire, thereby permitting use of water.


These fires involve combustible metals such as magnesium, titanium, zirconium, and sodium. These fires require special extinguishing agents and fire fighting techniques. Normal extinguishing agents should not be used to fight Class D fires because they could make the fire worse. This is because they may have a hazardous chemical reaction with the burning metal.

Video: Mine Fire Training

Video: Coal Mine Fire Training

When a fire is discovered, your immediate reaction in fighting the fire is crucial. Mere seconds are available for preventing the spread of the fire. For this reason you should know where the nearest fire extinguisher is located, and whether it is permissible for this type of fire. If you are uncertain about the contents of the extinguisher, read the main instructions on the body of the canister.

For most portable fire extinguishers, you usually have to stand no more than 8 feet from the fire. Direct the stream at the base of the flame, not higher up at the smoke. A 30-pound extinguisher will normally last 18 to 25 seconds. Do not turn your back to a fire. When the fire is extinguished, back away from it and watch for any flare up.

Fire Fighting Equipment and Methods

The mine’s fire prevention and fire fighting plan is designed to reduce the opportunity for a fire starting, and should one occur, to limit the extent of its destruction. The damage resulting from a fire can be minimized through adequate fire protection. Fire protection consists of monitoring and controlling fire hazards, available fire fighting equipment, especially portable fire extinguishers, and the personnel who are trained to use the equipment effectively in the event of a fire. The following are some good fire prevention techniques.

Basics of Fire

  1. The necessary ingredients of a fire are fuel, oxygen, and heat. Fire fighting calls for removal of at least one of these ingredients. The fuel can be moved to a safer location. Oxygen can be sealed off from the fire, thereby suffocating it. Or the fire’s heat can be reduced by cooling the fuel.
  2. Fires have been classified into four types based on the kind of fuel involved in the fire. These different kinds of fires are fought in different ways. In fact, using the wrong kind of chemical to extinguish the fire can even spread the fire further.

Video: Types of Fire Extinguishers and Their Uses


Video: Fire Extinguisher Types and Uses


Fire Extinguisher Types

Extinguisher Types of Fire
Color Type Solids (wood, paper, cloth, etc) Flammable Liquids Flammable Gasses Electrical Equipment Cooking Oil & Fats Special Notes
Types of Fire Extinguishers -Water Water check-mark No No No No Dangerous if used on “liquid fires” or live electricity.
TypesOfFireExtinguishers-foam Foam check-mark check-mark No No No Not practical for home use
 Type of Fire Extinguishers - powder Dry Powder check-mark check-mark check-mark check-mark No  Safe use up to 1000v.
Types Of Fire Extinguishers - CO2 Carbon Dioxide (CO2) No check-mark No check-mark check-mark Safe on high and low voltages.





AMIT 129: Lesson 8 Mine Maps, Emergency Evacuation, Barricading


At the end of this lesson, students will be able to:

  • Explain the use mine maps.
  • Describe escapeways.
  • Identify causes of mine emergencies.
  • Explain fire in mines.
  • Describe hazards of toxic gases in mines.
  • Explain mine emergency warning systems.
  • Summarize emergency evacuation systems.

Reading & Lecture

A mine map is a schematic drawing on paper of the mine workings, drawn according to scale and showing all important features of the mine. The mine map is designed by a competent engineer and is periodically updated to reflect all changes in the mine, such as new development areas, abandoned areas, or drill holes.

The mine map shows all important features of the mine. The following list represents the kinds of features that might be shown on the map. The actual contents of the map depend on important features at the mine.

  1. Name and address of the mine
  2. The scale and orientation of the map
  3. The property or boundary lines of the mine
  4. The adit shafts, stops, drifts, tunnels, entries, rooms, crosscuts, and all other excavations of the ore bed being mined
  5. All drill holes that penetrate the ore bed being mined
  6. Dip of the ore bed
  7. Any outcrop of the ore bed within the bounds of the property
  8. The elevations of tops and bottoms of shafts and slopes.
  9. The elevation of the floor at intervals of not more than two hundred feet for:
    1. At least one entry of each working section and one intersection.
    2. Developments advancing toward or adjacent to property or boundary lines or adjacent mines.
  10. Contour lines passing through whole number elevations of the ore bed being mined.
  11. Entries and air courses with the direction of air flow indicated by arrows, and location of fan controls.
  12. The location of all mine ventilation fans.
  13. Escapeways throughout all levels of the mine.
  14. The known underground workings in the same ore bed on the adjoining properties within one thousand feet of such mine workings and projections.
  15. The location and elevation of any body of water dammed in the mine or held back in any portion of the mine.
  16. The abandoned portion or portions of the aline.
  17. Mines above or below the mine workings.
  18. The location of any streams or bodies of water on the surface.
  19. Either producing or abandoned oil and gas wells located within five hundred feet of the mine.
  20. The location of all high pressure pipelines, high voltage power lines and roads.
  21. The location of railroad tracks and public highways leading to the mine and mine buildings of a permanent nature and showing identifying names.
  22. Where the overburden is less than one hundred feet, any dwellings.
  23. Major underground travelways and haulageways and ore passes at the mine.
  24. Major underground facilities including lunchrooms, refuge areas, mine shafts, shops, storage facilities (explosives, fuel, supply), and locations of underground telephones.


Mine Emergency Evacuation Video

Emergency Evacuation Video

Causes of Mine Emergencies

Accidental explosions

  • Dynamite
  • Fuel tanks
  • Electrical Equipment
  • Certain mine gases (hydrogen, methane, etc.)


  • Timber
  • Rubber tires
  • Electrical equipment, including batteries and battery chargers
  • Combustible metals, such as magnesium, titanium, zirconium, and sodium.
  • Rubbish
  • Petroleum products

Toxic gases

  • Gases from undetonated explosives
  • Gases from exploding batteries or other burning electrical equipment
  • Fumes from certain petroleum products
  • Gases from the ore itself

Loss of ventilation due to accidental failure of ventilation fans.

Inundation from water flooding into the mine.

Mine Warning System

Types of warning systems

  1. Visible – colored lights (red or blue, for example) mounted on stands in various parts of the mine.
  2. Audible – emergency alarms that can be heard over most mining equipment throughout the mine.
  3. Smell – stench canisters that release a chemical smelling like rotten eggs. The stench is carried through the mine by ventilation system and fills the entire mine within minutes.
  4. Mantrip drivers – drivers may give personal warnings to individual miners and pick them up for immediate transportation out of the mine.

Emergency Responses of a Miner

  1. The first thing to do in a mine emergency is warn other miners of the situation. Tell everyone to pass the word along so as to assure that all miners are aware of the emergency situation.
  2. Use your self-rescuer if the situation calls for it. In the event of a fire or explosion, put it on automatically in order to minimize your breathing carbon monoxide.
  3. Gather together in designated places according to the mine’s fire and evacuation plan. Stay together and remain calm.
  4. Provide first-aid to any injured miners. If any miners are unable to walk, use a first-aid stretcher or build age using whatever materials (planks, rods, fencing) are available.
  5. A supervisor should take charge of planning and organizing. Because of his experience and knowledge, you should respect and follow his orders. If no supervisor is present, one senior miner should take on the leadership of the group.
  6. If the phones are working, report your situation, location, and intentions to the dispatcher or operator. He may have some helpful information. If you are wearing your self-rescuer, do not remove it. You could use a code system such as the hoist signal system to communicate with the dispatcher by lightly hitting the phone with a tool.

Escapeways and Emergency Evacuation

  1. Your knowledge of the locations of all exits and escapeways from the mine is extremely important. If the main exit out of the mine is blocked, you must be familiar with the secondary route.
    1. Part 57-11-50 states that: “Every mine shall have two or more separate, properly maintained escapeways to the surface from the lowest levels which are so positioned that damage to one shall not lessen the effectiveness of the ethers”.
    2. Escapeways are periodically inspected and maintained in acceptable condition. The law requires that escapeways be maintained in a safe and travelable condition, and that they be marked with conspicuous and easily read direction signs that clearly indicate the ways of escape. For your reference, a mine map is posted at all shaft stations, and at all underground shops, lunchrooms, and other areas where miners congregate. You should know where these locations are from your working area.
    3. When an emergency occurs, you should attempt to reach fresh intake air above the fire or explosion. Air on the return side of the fire or explosion will contain carbon monoxide against which you should use your self-rescuer for protection.
    4. The final leg of your escape from the mine may be traveling an emergency hoist to the surface. Try to remain orderly and calm while waiting for the hoist, and keep your self-rescuer on if you are using it. Follow your supervisor’s orders, and let injured miners take the hoist first so that they can receive medical attention quickly.
    5. After you reach the surface, contact a supervisor or the mine operator immediately so he will know you are out of the mine.
  2. Emergency Evacuation Plan
    1. If you are going to evacuate, first try the route into the intake air so that you will be in fresh air. If that route is blocked, then try the secondary escapeway.
    2. You should carry your lunch bucket because you may need food if you are trapped or if you are forced to barricade.
    3. If the mine is full of dense smoke, use a rope if one is available to tie the miners in a line. Otherwise, keep close together so that no one gets lost from the group. Keep a look-out for fires or other hazardous conditions.

Trapped Miners in San Jose Mine, Chile

Diagram of the Chilean Miner Rescue - threefold rescue plan
A section view of the mine, started in 1895. The cause of the blockage was the collapse of some 750.000 tons of rock.
A diagram of the mine accident details for the mine incident in San Jose
CC BY-SA 3.0

Video: An In-Situ Refuge Container Overview




AMIT 129: Lesson 7 Mine Explosives and Blasting


Upon completion of this lesson students should be able to:

  • Describe types of explosives.
  • Explain the basics of handling explosives.
  • Explain the basics of toxic fumes.
  • Demonstrate safe work procedures.

Reading & Lecture

Mine Blasting

Blasting is the process of breaking rocks into small pieces by use of explosives.

Types of Explosives:

  • Explosives based on chemical nature
  • Explosives based on availability

Blasting in an open cut mine.


Explosives Types

The most important responsibility of the blaster in charge is to prepare and fire safely. They are to practice safety in transportation, storage, handling, and the proper use of explosives.

Mine Explosives


  • Black Powders (Early Times) – SN + Sulfur + Carbon
  • Dynamite – NG + Wood Pulp (or SN)
  • ANFO (Blasting Agents) – Ammonium Nitrate + Fuel Oil
  • Water Gel, Slurry & Emulsion
  • Detonators (Blasting Caps) – Electric, NONEL & Electronic
  • Safety Fuses
  • NONEL (Shock) Tubes
  • Detonating Cords
  • Primers & Boosters


Packaged Emulsions

Hazards in Use of Explosives


A. Transportation hazards

  1. The vehicle used to transport explosives should be in good operating condition. If the vehicle were to get a flat tire or lose its brakes It would lead to a serious hazard for everyone. The cargo space in which the explosives are stored should be of non-sparking material. If the vehicle got into an accident with damage to the cargo area, you would want to minimize any sparks that could set off the explosives.
  2. Detonators and explosives should be kept apart by at least four inches of hardwood, or transported separately. If a detonator were to accidentally fire this would prevent it from setting off any explosives.
  3. Explosives should be transported at times when the fewest number of people will be endangered. During shift change or before or after personnel are transported into or out of the mine is usually a good time to bring explosives into the mine.
  4. Explosives should not be stacked higher than the sideboards of the vehicle. If the vehicle were to hit a bump some boxes could fall off the side.
  5. No smoking is permitted on or near the vehicle. Hot ashes or flames pose a danger when mixed with powder.
  6. If ANFO or any other powder is spilled it should be immediately cleaned up.
  7. Do not ride on the cage when it is being used to transport explosive material.
  8. Vehicles should be driven carefully and excessive speeds should be avoided. Do not drive over unbridged power cables.
  9. Vehicles loaded with explosives should not drive into any maintenance area where sparks from welding or stray electric currents could set off explosives.


B. Detonator Hazards

  1. Do not let leg wires and detonators come into contact with electrical equipment, wires or rails. These may carry enough of a current to set off the charge.
  2. Caps can deteriorate and become more sensitive because of age. Caps may also become useless from such damage as being kinked, exposed to extreme heat, or contaminated with water. They should be properly disposed but only by experienced powdermen.


C. Magazine Hazards

  1. Magazines must be built in dry, isolated areas of the mine so as to be well ventilated, bullet-proof, locked, and have non-sparking material on the inside wall. It must be marked with a sign located in such a place that if a bullet were to be fired into it the bullet would not pass into the stored powder.
  2. Flammable materials such as fuel or oil should not be stored near a magazine.
  3. Smoking in and around a magazine is prohibited.
  4. Detonators and explosives should not be stored together in the same magazine. Separate magazines for them should be at least 25 feet apart.
  5. The magazine must be kept clean of ti ash, empty boxes, and paper at all times. They are both a fire hazard and a cause of slips and falls.
  6. No electric wiring or open lights should be taken into a magazine.
  7. Surplus or loose explosives should not be left in unsecured areas such as cuts, passes, or by the outside walls of the magazine.

Non-electric Detonators

D. Blasting Hazards


A misfire is a loaded hole that fails to fire. The procedure following firing a round is that the blaster or supervisor will inspect the muck pile for misfires. No one else is permitted to enter the area until the all-clear signal is given.

  1. If the blaster finds a misfire he will attempt to re-wire and detonate it or flush it out of the drill hole with water and then dispose of it.
  2. After the blast the rock pile should be hosed down with water to keep the dust settled.
  3. In the event the misfire is completely covered by rock, the blaster may not see it. This results in a very dangerous situation. Do not attempt to move it yourself. If you discover a misfire in the rock, work should stop immediately, the area should be cleared and guarded, and the supervisor should be contacted.
  4. Toxic fumes may be found after detonation. You can avoid these fumes by remaining out of the blast area until ventilation dilutes the gases and carries them out of the mine.
    • Carbon monoxide can be detected by observing one of the first symptoms of such poisoning – headache pain.
    • Explosives containing nitroglycerine or other nitro compounds may burn rather than detonate. One gas resulting from this is nitrogen dioxide which is extremely dangerous to your lungs in small amounts. It has a burned powder odor.
    • Wet ANFO will generate nitrous oxide fumes.
  5. After the blast the rock pile should be hosed down with water to keep the dust settled.


Overshooting results from either an excessive use of explosives, an improperly sized drill hole, or holes that are not properly placed according to the delay pattern. Undershooting is just the opposite. Overshooting weakens the remaining deposit making it susceptible to falls and may require use of supports. Undershooting results in an uneven face and creates haulage problems by having to move larger sized rocks.

 Fly Rock

Fly rock consists of pieces of rock blown from the shot area by the explosive force. This rock can be lethal because of its , weight and velocity of travel. Flyrock is also caused by a blowout. When a blast hole is not drilled deep enough into the rock, the explosive force blows the rock out into the drift or work area.

Flyrock has killed and injured people
A link to the CDC’s guide to flyrock awareness

Electrical Hazards

Electrical hazards are present if the mine uses electric blasting caps.

  1. Natural sources like static electricity or lightning storms.
  2. Man-made sources like stray electricity and radio transmitters.
  3. Only special galvanometers should be used to test continuity. Regular galvanometers may set off the charge. If you find a cap in the muck pile do not attempt to test the leg wires – only experienced powdermen are equipped to do such work.
  4. Any power equipment with leaking current presents a hazard.
  5. Static charge built up from pneumatic loading equipment.


Never drill into a bootleg – it could contain a charge of powder that might detonate when struck by the drill steel. Prior checks of the hole may have accidentally not detected the powder, so do not take any shortcuts.

Safe Work Procedures with Explosives


Task training is given to the powder crew to increase their technical skills in the use of explosives. Only experienced people trained in use of explosives or working under close supervision should work with explosives. All other miners should stay out of the way while the powder crew works unless assigned to the area.

Clearing the Blast Area

Clearing the blast area is very important. Unless the area is secured, other people may unknowingly walk into a life threatening situation from either the blast itself or the toxic fumes that follow the blast.

  1. The blasting crew will clear the area of all personnel, and then give a warning signal before setting of the round. Guards should be posted at all entrances to the area with specific instructions to keep everyone out. Guards should not leave their post even for a moment because someone could walk past without being seen. Guards must remain at their posts until specifically told to return to their regular work.
  2. Equipment should be moved clear of the blast area to prevent damage.
  3. Miners should stand clear of the blast area, such as behind equipment, to protect themselves from being hit by flyrock. Always give yourself enough room to stay clear.
An image of a warning sign outside of a mining area.
Photo by Kimon Berlin

Re-Entering the Blast Area

Before resumption of work, a supervisor or blaster will inspect the blast area for misfires and fumes. No one should enter this area past the guards until the all-clear signal is given by this person.

Reporting Undetonated or Misfired Explosives

Any miner who discovers an undetonated explosive near a magazine or along a haulageway, or a misfired explosive near their work area shall halt work, clear everyone out of the area and guard it, and notify a supervisor about the hazardous situation. Never attempt to move the explosive yourself because it may be very unstable and could go off in your hand.

Personal Protective Equipment

  • Hard hat
  • Safety Toed Shoes
  • Reflective Vest
  • Safety Glasses
  • Gloves
  • Hearing Protection



AMIT 129: Lesson 6 Conveyor System


Conveyors  are common around surface mine yards and plants. They are an efficient way to move material, but can be very dangerous to those working around them. You may be asked to work around them: to clean up spillages, for example, or to perform routine maintenance on them. Mines have established procedures for working around belts.


Upon completion of this lesson students will be able to:

  • Explain the conveyor system.
  • Define conveyor Start and Stop, Lock Out and Tag Out (LO/TO).
  • Explain conveyor tags.
  • Demonstrate how pull cords work.

Reading & Lecture

Conveyor Belts Safety

Following these safety rules will help keep you safe. Carelessness or lack of attention can result in your being pulled into the rollers or other moving parts, causing injury or death. Some common-sense safety practices are as follows:

  1. Tuck in loose clothing, or avoid wearing anything that is baggy enough to get caught by moving belts and rollers.
  2. Remove loose jewelry. Your mine may not allow jewelry at all, including necklaces, rings, or bracelets. Check with your safety training to see what the policy is.
  3. Do not remove guards from conveyor unless it is necessary to do the task assigned. Turn off the conveyor if possible, until your job is completed. Be sure to lock it out and tag it out. Replace guards immediately upon finishing and before restarting the conveyor.
  4. Be extremely cautious around rollers… you can get sucked in, and you will never win the battle against that equipment.

Conveyor belt shut off, lock out and tag out (LO/TO)

If you are asked to do maintenance on a conveyor, be sure it is turned off, locked out and tagged out. Notify everyone that you are turning off the conveyor, and be sure to check that it doesn’t have two sources of power. It is never a good idea to ride on a moving conveyor, so stay off of these pieces of equipment when they are running.

Before starting your task, make sure the conveyor is:

  • shut off (verify shut-off by checking the power meter)
  • locked out (keep the key to the lock in your pocket, always with you)
  • tagged out (put your name and the date on the tag and do not give your key to anyone else)

Be sure to:

  • never ask someone else to remove your lock, and do not take anyone else’s lock off of a power source – you could be killed if the equipment you are working on starts unexpectedly; and
  • know what the lock out/tag out devices are and where they are stored on your mine’s property.

After you have completed the lock out/tag out procedure, verify the power is off by pushing the start button. This will alert you if there is more than one power source to the conveyor.

Conveyors usually have “kill buttons” or “pull cords” on them to allow you to shut the power off immediately. You need to know where these are on every piece of equipment you are asked to work around so that in case of an emergency, you can shut down the conveyor. These devices are not a substitute for a LO/TO, however.

Diagram of an Austdac Pullkey ESS3 system
Diagram of an Austdac Pullkey ESS3 system

You may be asked to do maintenance on the upper end of the conveyor.

Make sure the anti-reversing mechanism on the head pulley is engaged to prevent the belt from rolling backward as you move up the conveyor. When working off the ground, at the top of the conveyor belt, for example, you must wear an approved fall protection harness. This is a belt with a lanyard that attaches you to the structure you are working on.

Your fall protection harness may have a self-retracting lanyard, or may have a fixed length lanyard. Either way, it does you no good if it isn’t attached to something that will hold your weight if you fall. Your safety trainer will provide additional training on the use of fall protection.

It is up to you to know when you should wear it, how to put it on properly, and how to check it for wear.

A photo of an inadequate pulley guard.


The picture above shows an inadequate conveyor tail pulley guard. The rear and top of the pulley are fully exposed providing access to moving machine parts.

The guard in the picture below covers the pinch point and the moving parts of the tail pulley. If properly maintained, this design can prove effective in preventing contact during work-related activities.

A diagram showing an effective pulley guard
[Conveyor image with enclosed pulley guard case]
An image showing the guard surrounding a tail pulley
[Elevated tail pulley image]

The figure above shows an elevated tail pulley. Because the underside of the pulley is accessible, it needs to be guarded. The guard may have openings large enough to allow fines to fall through, but not large enough to allow a miner to reach the moving machine parts.

Visible Signs of Bad Conveyor

  • Cut and or worn return idler brackets
  • Spillage in the load zone
  • Edge damage to the conveyor belt (See examples)
  • Hot marks on the sides of the head chute where the belt has been riding
  • Belt running off at the counter weight and tail pulleys


Conveyor Pogo Mine

Advantage of Keeping Your Conveyor Belts Clean

  • Increase your production
  • Eliminate downtime
  • Greatly reduce damage to conveyor belt edges & structures
  • Improve life of conveyor belt and conveyor components
  • Reduce spillage
  • Improve SAFETY



A covered conveyor
Image attribution: Brian M. Powell. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license


AMIT 129: Lesson 4 Clean Housekeeping


Upon completing this lesson students should be able to:

  • Differentiate between the types of dust and their effects.
  • Give examples of dust control.
  • Identify toxic materials.
  • Explain housekeeping.
  • Explain spillage.

Reading & Lecture

Types of airborne particles and their effects on health

Respirable and non-respirable dust

  • Non-respirable dust is less dangerous; larger particles are filtered out by the nose and throat
  • Respirable dust is more dangerous; particles are invisible to the eye

Nuisance respirable dust

  • Little effect on lungs
  • Any reaction is potentially reversible

Respirable Dust:

  • Fibrogenic dusts (harmful to respiratory system): silica (quartz),  silicates (asbestos, mica), tin ore, coal, some iron ore
  • Toxic dusts (poisonous): arsenic, lead, mercury, antimony,  manganese, tungsten
  • Explosive dusts (combustible when airborne): coal, metallic dusts (aluminum, zinc, tin …)
  • Nuisance dust (little adverse effect): gypsum, kaolin, limestone

Fibrogenic respirable dust (e.g., asbestos, quartz)

  • Small particles enter lower lungs. Accumulations of particles cause scar tissue to be formed. Scar tissue interferes with transfer of oxygen and carbon dioxide through the lungs.
  • Silicosis is lung fibrosis caused by prolonged inhalation of silica dust.
  • Pneumoconiosis is a generic term describing several types of respiratory ailments, one of which is coal workers’ pneumoconiosis.
    • Major pneumoconiosis – lung disorder developed over a prolonged time causing disabling symptoms, is irreversible, and shortens life expectancy. Includes silica dioxide dusts, such as asbestos, quartz, and coal.
    • Minor pneumoconiosis – dust causes little or no inflammation and no major fibrosis, but can cause mechanical irritation of the lungs. Includes micas, clays, feldspars, and anthracite.
    • Benign pneumoconiosis – similar to minor pneumoconiosis. Includes calcium from limestone, marble, or-cement; graphite; titanium dioxide; stannic dioxide; ferric oxide; and barium sulfate or oxide.


Radon and Thoron daughters: are found in uranium and thorium ores. Daughters attach to dust particles and are inhaled into the lungs.

  • Excessive exposure to radon and thoron daughters can cause lung cancer.
  • Exposure measured in a unit known as the Working Level Month (WLM). Relevant formulas are:
    Exposure = radiation level x time
    Given that: radiation level is the working level, time is in months,
    Then: exposure is working level months,
    Or: Working Level Months = Working Level X Months

    • Formulas indicate miners should not spend prolonged time in excessively contaminated areas. Low levels of radiation are safe work areas.
    • The law states that no miner can be exposed to more than 4 WLM in any one year.
  • Smoking increases the risk of radiation causing lung cancer by a factor of ten.

Gamma and X-ray exposures

  • Not considered dangerous in most uranium mines.
  • Use film badges to measure exposure around high grade uranium ore.

Dust Control


  • avoidance by modifying operations
  • reduction of dusts with proper maintenance
North 7700 Series Half Mask Air-Purifying Respirator. Source, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Electronic Library of Construction Occupational Safety and Health
North 7700 Series Half Mask Air-Purifying Respirator


  • cleanup of workings
  • respirators that filter dusts


  • water spray
  • foam spray
  • rock dusting to suppress combustible dust


  • main ventilation system
  • auxiliary ventilation system

The Most Common Dust Control Methods

Method of measurement for airborne particles

  • Respirators that filter dusts
  • Ventilation dilutes the concentration of dusts
  • Water sprays suppress dusts

Method of measurement for airborne particles

  1. Respirable dusts
    1. Gravimetric sampling
    2. Time schedule for sampling
  2. Radon thoron daughters
    • Air sampling
    • Counting equipment
    • Time schedule for sampling
  3. Gamma radiation
    • Scintillation counts
    • Time schedule for sampling

Threshold limit values

  1. Part 57.5-1b states  that miners shall not be exposed to asbestos dust exceeding 10 fibers longer than 5 micrometers per milliliter of air
  2. Part 57.5-16 states that silica sand shall not be used as an abrasive substance in abrasive blasting cleaning operation.
  3. Part 57.5-38 and 39 state that the maximum exposure to radon daughters in any calendar year is 4 WLM, and 1.0 WL in active workings.
  4. Part 57.5-47c states that annual individual gamma radiation expo-sure shall not exceed 5 rems.
[Gravimetric Dust sampler diagram]

Hazards from Toxic Materials

  • Types of toxic, caustic or noxious substances used in the mine.
  • Procedures for handling toxic, caustic or noxious substances.

Health Provisions Contained in the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 (CFR 30 Part 55 or 56):

  • Regulations prescribe health and safety standards for the purpose of protecting life, promoting health and safety, and preventing accidents.
  • Violations of these regulations may be cited by MSHA inspectors.


Importance of Clean-up and Good Housekeeping

  1. Reduces the number of unsafe conditions which contribute to accidents. Oily rags, empty or uncovered grease and oil containers, tangled hoses, and discarded trash are examples of such hazards.
  2.  A messy workplace slows down work. If tools are laying about unorganized, more time is required to find them.
  3. Cleaning-up during work is a good fire prevention technique. Areas around fuel and explosive supplies should be kept free of any flammable materials and trash.

Applicable Federal Regulation

  1. Maintenance of clean work places.
    • The law states that workplaces, passageways, storerooms, and service rooms must be kept clean and orderly, and water drainage must be provided where practicable (Part 57.20-3)
    • The law states that any health and safety hazard that is not immediately obvious must be labeled with a warning sign. This sign must “be readily visibly, legible, display the nature of the hazard, and any protective action required” (Part 57.20-11).
  2. Disposal of toxic materials.
    • The law states that flammable and combustible wastes should not accumulate and become a fire hazard. (Part 57.4-50).
    • The law states that potentially dangerous gases should be tested, and control measures taken as appropriate. (Part 57.20-9).
    • The law states that toxic materials should be clearly labeled and safe handling procedures identified. (Part 57.30-12).

Housekeeping Procedures

  1. Organize your work ahead of time so you have all the equipment you need where you need it. Make cleaning-up part of your work.
  2. Clean up spills whenever and wherever they occur.
  3. After you are finished with equipment and no longer plan on using it for awhile, put it away such as in a supply room or other designated area. Park vehicles properly. Keep oily rags in closed containers and remove them from the mine daily.
  4. When handling tools, supplies, or equipment, use caution in how you handle them. Avoid hurting yourself, others, or the equipment itself. If a piece of equipment or a tool is broken, get it fixed or serviced rather than leaving it and letting another miner discover its condition when it may be for an emergency. The next time the tool could be needed in an emergency you could be the victim.

Benefits of Good Housekeeping

  • Eliminates accident and fire hazards
  • Maintains safe, healthy work conditions
  • Saves time, money, materials, space and effort
  • Improves productivity and quality
  • Boosts morale
  • Reflects a well-run organization

Good Housekeeping Habits

  • Make time for housekeeping
  • Evaluate your workspace
  • Remove hazards before starting work
  • Turn equipment off after using it
  • Clean up as you go
  • Never ignore a safety hazard

Spillage Hazards

  1. Rock spillage is found to varying degrees at a number of locations.
    • Draw points
    • Ore passes
    • Grizzly or crusher
    • Haulageways
    • At transfer points from ore pass or muck car to haulage truck or ore car.
    • Along belt lines and their transfer points.
  2. Hazards associated with rock spillage.
    • Rock spillage poses safety hazards to miners and equipment. Miners can trip over rocks which is a leading cause of accidents and equipment has less room to operate and maneuver when crowded by spillage. Uneven floors caused by spillage is a major contributing cause of haulage accidents.
    • Substantial rock spillage increases resistance to ventilation. Spillage cuts down the volume of air passing by.
  3. Rock spillage should be cleaned-up wherever it poses a health and safety hazard. Depending on the size of   the spillage, either shovels or loaders should be used in clean-up.