The importance of health and safety for miners

By Anita Jaynes on 24 August, 2022

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Mining is one of the most hazardous jobs in the UK. The possibility of fires, floods, collapses and explosions means that miners should take the utmost care. Below, we explore the main health and safety procedures and why they are so relevant to preventing accidents and keeping workers safe. 

Wear safety equipment at all times

Personal protective equipment is the first resource available to miners to keep themselves protected. Accidents at work do occur, but the seriousness of injuries can be controlled and limited by wearing safety equipment such as hard hats, boots, gloves and goggles at all times. Moreover, hi-vis workwear enables miners to be visible when light is diminished, reducing the risk of accidents transpiring due to carelessness.

However, accidents are not the only risk that miners face as the environment itself can be harmful. For instance, respirators are essential in these environments to protect the lungs of workers and therefore restrict and prevent the development of respiratory diseases. 

Training 

Employee training is imperative to empower miners to adhere to health and safety protocols across the mine. An induction training programme for new workers will provide them with a general overview of protocols and experience surrounding the safety requirements on-site. At the same time, refresher sessions for more experienced members of the team can provide useful insight and have proven beneficial.

Supervision

Another element that cannot be undervalued in the mining industry is supervision. Supervision is of the utmost importance to uphold safety standards in the mine. This works best by utilising periodical assessments about how work is carried out on all levels by employees, gathering information about performance and providing feedback so employees can consider how to improve.

Keep a record

Keeping detailed records can help to enhance safety in the mine too. This can be achieved through keeping track of safety standards and training for all workers. There must be a log of accidents that have occurred during working hours, allowing management to assess the situation and evaluate how safety procedures can be adapted in the future. 

Plan risky operations in advance

Hazardous operations are not infrequent in the mining industry. When planning these operations allow for extra time and additional funds so that enough resources are available to see the project run smoothly. Likewise, when planning complicated operations, experience should be at the forefront of the decision-making process. Experienced team members leading and working during these operations can ensure that health and safety procedure are followed correctly, whilst reducing the risk of serious accidents.

Health and safety are paramount in mining and following the necessary safety protocols set out by the industry and employers is imperative. All workers in the mining trade should be educated on these practices and fully prepared to adhere to these in order to ensure the safety of themselves and their co-workers.