FRANKFORT — This year’s Legislative Session has been busy. The Kentucky House of Representatives passed a bill on March 6 that deals specifically with mine inspections. HB 384 awaits final vote in the State Senate. If passed into law, HB 384 will reduce the number of inspections mines receive each year. However, supporters of the bill claim it is designed to actually make mines safer, by replacing some of the inspections with mine safety analysis sessions.
A synopsis of this legislation states that HB 384 will: Amend KRS 351.090 and 351.140 to reduce the required number of inspections of underground mines; specify reduced number of required inspections for both annual mine inspections and annual full electrical inspections.
Basically, the idea is to send mine safety experts into the work environment to discuss appropriate safety measures for daily operations with the miners. These mine safety analysis visits would take the place of a certain number of inspections, but not all of them. Regular inspections will still occur each year at mines. It is estimated that possibly half of the six inspections required each year could be replaced by safety analysis visits. Also, HB 384 would reduce the number of full electrical inspections in mines from two down to one per year.
This bill was introduced in the House by Rep. Robert Benvenuti III, a republican representing District 88 in Fayette County. HB 384 passed through the House of Representatives with a vote of 91 in favor to 1 opposed. Now, the Senate has the option of approval or rejection.
Synopsis of bill taken from legiscan.com.
Sam Neace can be reached at 606-629-3243 or on Twitter @HazardHerald.