ASSE: Safety Engineers, MSHA, Address Mining Safety

The American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) and the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) officials signed an agreement today in Denver that creates an alliance to improve safety and health conditions at mines throughout the United States.

The agreement states that MSHA and ASSE will collaborate to advance the protection of miners, promote best practices and encourage mine operators to develop and utilize safety and health management programs.

"This is a significant action," said John Correll, deputy assistant secretary of MSHA. "It's good for the American mining industry. We believe that alliances such as this agreement being signed today will lay the groundwork for an even safer and more healthful U.S. mining industry for years to come."

Noting the mining industry just experienced its two safest years in the recorded history of mining, Correll added, "After several years of relative stagnation, the number of miners lost in accidents on the job dropped to a record low of 72 in 2001 and to another record low of 67 last year. This means that more miners were sent home to their families in a safe and healthy condition. That is our ultimate goal."

Mining is a quickly growing segment of ASSE's membership. The ASSE Mining Practice Specialty, one of 13 ASSE practice specialties, was established in October 1997.

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