Mine Operator/Contractor Responsibilities under MSHA Regulations

MSHA has a variety of links online. Visit www.msha.gov for information. There is a compliance assistance page at:


Surface mines are subject to a minimum of two inspections a year. Contractors may be included if they are onsite at the time of inspection. Information regarding inspections is located at:


MSHA requires that a person be designated in charge of the mine at all times. 

§56.18009   Designation of person in charge.

When persons are working at the mine, a competent person designated by the mine operator shall be in attendance to take charge in case of an emergency.

Other emergency requirements

§56.18012   Emergency telephone numbers.

Emergency telephone numbers shall be posted at appropriate telephones.

§56.18013   Emergency communications system.

A suitable communication system shall be provided at the mine to obtain assistance in the event of an emergency.

§56.18014   Emergency medical assistance and transportation.

Arrangements shall be made in advance for obtaining emergency medical assistance and transportation for injured persons.

§56.15001   First-aid materials.

Adequate first-aid materials, including stretchers and blankets, shall be provided at places convenient to all working areas. Water or neutralizing agents shall be available where corrosive chemicals or other harmful substances are stored, handled, or used.

Information about penalty assessments and payments can be found at:


MSHA Penalty calculations is mandated by (30 CFR Part 100). See the requirements at:


You can get to MSHA’s online filing page at:


You will need to provide information to sign on and establish a password.

MSHA will issue mine Identification numbers to all mines and/or portal mining equipment such as crushers and screens. Mine operators can request a mine id (7000-51) at: https://www.msha.gov/support-resources/forms-online-filing/2018/05/23/mine-id-request

Contractors can request a contractor designation (7000-52) at:


Mine operators must file a legal identify (2000-7) with MSHA. This can be done online at: https://www.msha.gov/support-resources/forms-online-filing/2018/05/23/legal-identification-report

In addition, once MSHA issues the appropriate numbers, a quarterly report must be filed. The 30 CFR Part 50.30 states that the form 7000-2 must be submitted within 15 days after the close of each calendar quarter. Those forms filed after the 15 day period will be considered late. The Quarterly Mine Employment and Coal Production Report (7000-2) can be found at: https://www.msha.gov/support-resources/forms-online-filing/2015/04/15/quarterly-mine-employment-and-coal-production


You must also notify MSHA of the approximate or actual date mine operation will commence. When a mine is closed, the person in charge shall indicate whether the closure is temporary or permanent. The Commencement/Closure report can be found at: Report Commencement/Closure of Operation – Metal and Nonmetal Mines | Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA)

I recommend following up with an email to the MSHA Field Office responsible for your area.

Recordable injuries must be filed with MSHA using the Mine Accident, Injury and Illness Report (7000-1) Locate the form at: https://www.msha.gov/support-resources/forms-online-filing/2015/04/14/mine-accident-injury-and-illness-report

MSHA requires all stone, gravel and sand producers to file a Part 46 Training Plan. The online Adviser is at: Electronic Training Plan Advisor | Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) The plan is automatically approved if it contains the required elements in (30 CFR Part 46).  See https://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?SID=471907bcf6bbd3f43818810ae41ee505&mc=true&tpl=/ecfrbrowse/Title30/30cfr46_main_02.tpl for the regulation.

Surface mines and mine contractors are required to comply with the Mandatory Standards of 30 CFR Part 56. They are listed at: eCFR :: 30 CFR Part 56 -- Safety and Health Standards - Surface Metal and Nonmetal Mines

Mine Operators and contractors are also subject to the requirements of the Hazard Communication (30 CFR Part 47). See the regulation at:

eCFR :: 30 CFR Part 47 -- Hazard Communication (HazCom)

A written plan is required and must be available to MSHA. Sample plans may be available online using a google search.

Mine Operators and contractors are also subject to the requirements of MSHA’s Standard on Occupational Noise (30 CFR Part 62). See the requirements at:

eCFR :: 30 CFR Part 62 -- Occupational Noise Exposure

A written program is required for all miners exposed to a time weighed average of 85 dBa. Dual hearing protection is required at or above the TWA 105 dBa level.

A written program must be available to MSHA. Sample plans may be available online using a google search or from me.

Pre-Shift Inspection

MSHA requires the pre-shift inspection of all mobile mining equipment. Written documentation is required on a per-shift basis. The regulation requires a form that documents inspection of all safety items on the equipment. The regulation requires written documentation that must be made available to MSHA upon inspection or request.

Most manufacturers have a form specific to their machine or a manual that will list items that must be inspected. Samples are available online.

§56.14100   Safety defects; examination, correction and records.

(a) Self-propelled mobile equipment to be used during a shift shall be inspected by the equipment operator before being placed in operation on that shift.

(b) Defects on any equipment, machinery, and tools that affect safety shall be corrected in a timely manner to prevent the creation of a hazard to persons.

(c) When defects make continued operation hazardous to persons, the defective items including self-propelled mobile equipment shall be taken out of service and placed in a designated area posted for that purpose, or a tag or other effective method of marking the defective items shall be used to prohibit further use until the defects are corrected.

(d) Defects on self-propelled mobile equipment affecting safety, which are not corrected immediately, shall be reported to and recorded by the mine operator. The records shall be kept at the mine or nearest mine office from the date the defects are recorded, until the defects are corrected. Such records shall be made available for inspection by an authorized representative of the Secretary.

Examination of Working Places

MSHA requires a physical inspection of all plant and machinery. This includes all areas of the pit or quarry, crushing and screening machinery and any other area where miners or contractors are assigned to work. The regulation requires written documentation that must be made available to MSHA upon inspection or request. Contractors can be required to perform an exam prior to starting work on a per shift basis.

§56.18002   Examination of working places.

(a) A competent person designated by the operator shall examine each working place at least once each shift before miners begin work in that place, for conditions that may adversely affect safety or health.

(1) The operator shall promptly notify miners in any affected areas of any conditions found that may adversely affect safety or health and promptly initiate appropriate action to correct such conditions.

(2) Conditions noted by the person conducting the examination that may present an imminent danger shall be brought to the immediate attention of the operator who shall withdraw all persons from the area affected (except persons referred to in section 104(c) of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977) until the danger is abated.

(b) A record of each examination shall be made before the end of the shift for which the examination was conducted. The record shall contain the name of the person conducting the examination; date of the examination; location of all areas examined; and description of each condition found that may adversely affect the safety or health of miners.

(c) When a condition that may adversely affect safety or health is corrected, the examination record shall include, or be supplemented to include, the date of the corrective action.

(d) The operator shall maintain the examination records for at least one year, make the records available for inspection by authorized representatives of the Secretary and the representatives of miners, and provide these representatives a copy on request.

MSHA Requires you post effective signage for speed and direction of travel

§56.9100   Traffic control.

To provide for the safe movement of self-propelled mobile equipment—

(a) Rules governing speed, right-of-way, direction of movement, and the use of headlights to assure appropriate visibility, shall be established and followed at each mine; and

(b) Signs or signals that warn of hazardous conditions shall be placed at appropriate locations at each mine.