Mine Safety

A special issue of Safety (ISSN 2313-576X).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 August 2020) | Viewed by 31446

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
School of Minerals and Energy Resources Engineering, University of New South Wales Sydney, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia
Interests: mining engineering; mining methods; mine safety; strata control; mine geomechanics; subsidence; mining education

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Co-Guest Editor
Engineering and Information Sciences, University of Wollongong, Wollongong, NSW 2522, Australia
Interests: development and application of advanced CFD modelling techniques in mining engineering, in particular, goaf gas flow characteristics for fire control and gas drainage, airflow patterns and dust controls on longwall face and drivages; innovative goaf inertisation methods for controlling gas explosion and spontaneous heating fires in longwall goafs; coal mine gas drainage and recovery technologies; coal mine gas prediction and coalbed methane studies, particularly for multiple seams and abandoned coal mines/workings; mine ventilatin and innovative dust controls on modern longwall faces

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Co-Guest Editor
Department of Energy Resources Engineering, Pukyong National University, Busan 48513, Republic of Korea
Interests: smart mining; renewables in mining; space mining; AICBM (AI, IoT, cloud, big data, mobile) convergence; unmanned aerial vehicle; mine planning and design; open-pit mining operation; mine safety; geographic information systems; 3D geo-modeling; geostatistics; hydrological analysis; energy analysis and simulation; design of solar energy conversion systems; renewable energy systems
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Special Issue of Safety is focused on international mine safety. Mining, anywhere in the world, involves working in potentially-hazardous conditions, which require high levels of awareness of hazards and risks involved; well-designed mine plans and mining methods; and appropriate, proactive and responsive mine management approaches. A particular characteristic of mining hazards and associated risk management is that the level and nature of hazards can vary significantly from one day to another, as the mine develops through different regions of the rock mass where changing conditions prevail.

The approaches taken by mines to the important issue of mine safety can vary significantly around the world, as can the hazard levels and the different mining technologies and systems. However, the universal goal must be "zero harm" for all personnel.

This issue of Safety is dedicated to safety issues facing the mining industry and aims to showcase a range of safety-related mining environmental issues and hazard identification processes; case studies of proactive safety management initiatives; and analyses of, and insights into significant, industry-wide safety performance improvements and achievements.

Prof. Dr. Bruce Hebblewhite
Assoc. Prof. Ting Ren
Prof. Yosoon Choi
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • mine safety
  • hazard assessment
  • risk management
  • core risks
  • mining conditions

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

20 pages, 1365 KiB  
Article
Incident Causal Factors and the Reasons for Conducting Investigations: A Study of Five Ghanaian Large-Scale Mines
by Eric Stemn, Florence Ntsiful, Marconi Afenyo Azadah and Theophilus Joe-Asare
Safety 2020, 6(1), 9; https://doi.org/10.3390/safety6010009 - 6 Feb 2020
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 7723
Abstract
Background: This research sought to understand the perspective of mineworkers regarding incident investigations, with the objective of identifying incident investigations improvement opportunities. First, through interviews, the research sought to identify the causal factors considered during investigations and the reasons for conducting investigations in [...] Read more.
Background: This research sought to understand the perspective of mineworkers regarding incident investigations, with the objective of identifying incident investigations improvement opportunities. First, through interviews, the research sought to identify the causal factors considered during investigations and the reasons for conducting investigations in the Ghanaian mining industry. Secondly, through questionnaire surveys, the study focused on understanding the extent to which a large sample of mineworkers considered the identified causal factors and investigation reasons relevant and applicable in their mine. Method: Data were collected from 41 participants through interviews and 659 respondents through surveys, and the data were analyzed through thematic, content, and statistical analyses, including descriptive statistics, one-way ANOVA, and correlation analysis. Result: The interviews led to the identification of five and nine categories of incident causal factors and reasons for investigating incidents, respectively. The results suggested a focus on workers’ unsafe acts as the main incident causal factor and identifying the person who caused the incident as one of the major reasons for investigating incidents, as these two factors where the modal choice from both the interviews and survey across all five mines. The results further showed that concerning the accident causal factors and the reasons for investigating incidents, no significant difference was observed between the perspectives of mineworkers involved in investigations and mineworkers with no investigation responsibilities. Conclusion: It can be concluded from the results that talking to ordinary mineworkers does not generate innovative safety responses in this context, as the workers believe whatever they are taught, without critiquing it. Again, the focus on workers’ behavior as an accident causal factor is an indication of single-loop learning in contrast to double-loop learning, and its implication as well as opportunities to strengthen incident investigation focusing on improving organizational safety have been discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mine Safety)
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15 pages, 640 KiB  
Article
Analysis of Recommendations from Mining Incident Investigative Reports: A 50-Year Review
by Emily Tetzlaff, Tammy Eger, Ann Pegoraro, Sandra Dorman and Victor Pakalnis
Safety 2020, 6(1), 3; https://doi.org/10.3390/safety6010003 - 7 Jan 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 9285
Abstract
A systematic analysis was conducted using ten occupational health and safety commissioned reports from Canada, New Zealand, United States, United Kingdom, and Australia spanning from 1967 to 2015. The objective was to identify commonalities and differences in the key recommendations across the identified [...] Read more.
A systematic analysis was conducted using ten occupational health and safety commissioned reports from Canada, New Zealand, United States, United Kingdom, and Australia spanning from 1967 to 2015. The objective was to identify commonalities and differences in the key recommendations across the identified reports. The text-mining software Leximancer was utilized to analyze the content of the recommendations through the semantic extraction of dominant themes, and the relational extraction and mapping of thematic relationships against each other. The identified themes were then analyzed within the concept map to fully understand the relationships. Based on the concept map, the thematic analysis provided a longitudinal perspective of the recommendations, identifying six key themes and 49 sets of overlapping recommendations. Key themes included: health and safety hazards (n = 10), legislation, regulations and organizational structure (n = 13), emergency management and mine rescue (n = 9), training, education and competence (n = 10), technology (n = 4), and research (n = 3). The results of this analysis illustrate that the same hazards continue to be identified across reports and recommendations, regardless of time or country of origin. This indicates that the communication of recommendations and/or the strategies developed in response to the recommendations need to be further addressed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mine Safety)
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11 pages, 1857 KiB  
Article
How Much Practice Is Required to Reduce Performance Variability in a Virtual Reality Mining Simulator?
by Courtney Nickel, Carolyn Knight, Aaron Langille and Alison Godwin
Safety 2019, 5(2), 18; https://doi.org/10.3390/safety5020018 - 13 Apr 2019
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 5422
Abstract
Virtual reality allows researchers to explore training scenarios that are not feasible or are potentially risky to recreate in the real world. The aim of this research was to examine whether using a tutorial session prior to using the mining simulator could adequately [...] Read more.
Virtual reality allows researchers to explore training scenarios that are not feasible or are potentially risky to recreate in the real world. The aim of this research was to examine whether using a tutorial session prior to using the mining simulator could adequately reduce the performance variability and increase the consistency of participant performance metrics. Eighteen participants were randomly assigned to a tutorial or a non-tutorial group. The tutorial group completed a five-minute tutorial that introduced them to the basics of the machine and virtual reality environment. All participants then completed five sessions in the simulator lasting five minutes each. Personality scores were recorded and participants answered questions to test their situational awareness after each session. Performance metrics such as number of collisions and perception response time were recorded by the simulator. A Wilcoxon signed rank test was used to determine at what point a significant difference in performance metrics was apparent across the five sessions. A mixed effects multilevel regression was done to evaluate the change in variability across time. There were no significant correlations between the personality questionnaire scores and the number of collisions or the perception response time. Both groups demonstrated high standard deviation scores for collisions and perception response time, but the tutorial group had decreasing variability across time. Both groups began to exhibit more consistent scores in the simulator after 10 min of use. Situational awareness questions require some refinement prior to further testing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mine Safety)
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25 pages, 1512 KiB  
Article
Investigating the Maturity of Incident Investigations of the Ghanaian Mining Industry and Its Effect on Safety Performance
by Eric Stemn, Carmel Bofinger, David Cliff and Maureen E. Hassall
Safety 2019, 5(1), 3; https://doi.org/10.3390/safety5010003 - 10 Jan 2019
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 7519
Abstract
Effective incident investigations have been recognised as a vital means of improving safety. Nevertheless, there has been little attempt to link incident investigations to actual safety performance. In this study, a framework for assessing the maturity of incident investigations and identifying areas for [...] Read more.
Effective incident investigations have been recognised as a vital means of improving safety. Nevertheless, there has been little attempt to link incident investigations to actual safety performance. In this study, a framework for assessing the maturity of incident investigations and identifying areas for improvements is described. The framework was developed based on a literature review and interviews with 41 investigators across five large-scale Ghanaian gold mines. The framework consists of 20 elements across four dimensions and five maturity levels. The dimensions (investigator competencies, system of investigation, stages of investigation and post-investigation findings) consider the most relevant aspects of practical investigation and for each dimension, elements that are more specific were defined across five maturity levels. Mapping the interview data collected from five mines into a maturity framework highlighted that the mines occupied different positions on the framework. Some occupied the advanced levels consistently and others consistently occupied the lower levels. Applying the interview data to the framework also identified priority areas for improvement. Finally, the maturity scores derived from mapping interview data onto the framework were correlated with the incidence rates of the mines to determine if any relationship existed between the two variables. The low incidence rate mines had higher maturity scores and the high incidence rate mines had lower maturity scores. It was found that the method was effective in practice, giving clear indications of areas where improvements are needed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mine Safety)
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