WASHINGTON, D.C. (WBOY) – According to the U.S Department of Labor, mining is a dangerous industry with 5 fatalities recorded in 2020, not including long-term health issues faced in their occupation.
The U.S. Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) launched the free “Miner Safety and Health” app on Wednesday as an easy tool to help miners get direct access to important health information.
Through the five main sections of the app, miners can access information about safety, health, miners’ rights, learn about MSHA and contact MSHA, whether they are at mine sites or outside of work. The app will also send users notifications of mining accidents and how to prevent them.
“Miners nationwide can now access important safety and health and miners’ rights information in the palm of their hands,” said Assistant Secretary of Labor for Mine Safety and Health, Chris Williamson.
The app includes features like a comprehensive guide on how to file a discrimination complaint and information about Part 90 transfer rights for coal miners who have already developed a pneumoconiosis such as black lung disease and allows miners to report accidents and hazards with the push of a few buttons.
Traditionally, miners received health and safety information from several sources, including their unions, miners’ representatives, mine’s safety office or managers, training programs, MSHA inspectors or industry stakeholder groups. Although those remain important avenues to reach miners, the app allows miners to research information directly.
“This new, innovative tool is another technical and educational resource to empower miners and help them play active roles in mine safety and health; even so, the Mine Act is clear that mine operators have the primary responsibility to maintain safe and healthy working conditions and provide regular and thorough training to miners,” Williamson said.
This technology is the result of countless conversations, feedback from miners, labor unions, and industry representatives and the tireless work of many MSHA and Department of Labor employees. The app is available on Android and iPhone and can also be found on the respective app stores by searching for “Miner Safety & Health.”