MSHA Final Rule - Surface Equipment Safety Programs

Discussing the need-to-know effects of 56/57.23000.

Tyler Rynearson

1/20/20241 min read

MSHA's new final rule, requiring a written safety program for surface mobile equipment, took effect on Friday, after originally being proposed back in September, 2021. Although fatalities involving powered haulage were reduced in 2022, statistics headed sharply in a dangerous direction throughout 2023 and are showing no sign of improvement so far into the new year.

So what does this new rule mean for mining operators? Well, in short, it means that all operators must develop, implement, and update a written safety program for surface mobile equipment. Mobile equipment here, is further defined as wheeled, skid-mounted, track-mounted, or rail-mounted equipment capable of moving or being moved, and any powered equipment that transports people, equipment, or materials (excluding belt conveyors).

These written programs also require the designation of a person responsible for evaluating and updating them at least annually, or as conditions or practices change. Additionally, much like other required plans and programs, operators will be required to make these documents available for inspection by miners and their representatives, and provide copies upon request.

Compliance with new regulations like this one can be daunting, we get it. But you don't have to go at it alone. We can help you get your programs in order, improve safety at your operation, and avoid that dirty look from your neighborhood MSHA inspector.

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