MSHA issues PPOV letters

Mar 16, 2013

The Department of Labor's Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) recently announced that it has put several mining operators on-notice in regard to potential patterns of violations (PPOV) that deal with health and safety standards. Four mines received these letters, and another two nonproducing mines received warning letters for the same issues.

Since 2010, MSHA has been using a new screening process to determine which mines have had issues with health and safety compliance and issues them PPOV letters when necessary. The criteria used determines where mining operators have used tools to correct their noncompliance but still fell short of regulations, and it also takes into account the injury rate and number of violations that have occurred at the mine.

"The revised potential pattern of violations program, along with other enforcement actions such as impact inspections, is making mines safer," said Joseph Main, assistant secretary of labor for MSHA. "The number of chronic violators meeting improved screening criteria has substantially dropped since we began implementing these criteria in 2010."

Since revising its policies in 2010, this is the third PPOV screening MSHA has conducted. With these screenings in effect, mining operators should be able to more easily ensure compliance with all MSHA regulations to reduce operational risk and the prospect of receiving an on-notice letter.

Category: risk management