MSHA Seeks Data on Controlling Exposures in Underground Mines
MSHA recently published a request for information (RFI) on approaches to control and monitor underground miners’ exposures to diesel exhaust. While MSHA’s data show that most of the permissible diesel-powered equipment used in these mines meets the federal agency’s requirements, MSHA is reviewing existing standards to ensure it is properly protecting miners’ health. In June 2012, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classified diesel exhaust as carcinogenic to humans. IARC’s classification is based on sufficient evidence that exposure to diesel engine exhaust is associated with increased lung cancer risk.
MSHA seeks information regarding the maintenance of diesel-powered equipment in underground coal mines. The agency also hopes to review information related to the monitoring of metal and nonmetal (MNM) miners' exposures to diesel particulate matter (DPM), and the DPM exposure limit for MNM miners.
Comments are due by Sept. 1, 2016. The RFI is available from the Federal Register.
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