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Possible extension to comments deadline for MSHA rule

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World Cement,

The deadline to file comments on the MSHA’s proposed workplace exam is expected to be extended by over two weeks, according to comments from the agency at a public hearing in Birmingham, Ala., on 4 August.

Public hearings dedicated to the discussion of the agency’s proposed rule, are being held around the country by the MSHA. The rule would require pre-shift inspections of a worksite and documentation of any hazards. Currently, operators inspect work areas during shifts and address safety issues that are discovered accordingly. The safety record of the industry has improved steadily for 15 years, so as currently written, the proposed rule is seen by NSSGA as overly prescriptive. It will likely undercut operator ability to manage for safety and is duplicative. The proposal would also increase administrative tasks without requisite safety benefits.

The current comment deadline is 6 September, but MSHA officials discussed possibly extending the deadline and further evaluating their proposed rule to better understand how it impacts operators. The agency wants to understand how operators conduct workplace exams, whether any possible future changes to the documentation provision might lessen worker concerns and what the costs would be if all exams had to be conducted only at the beginning of a shift.

Adapted from press release by

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