Coal Mine Accident-The Hindu-20-08-2022

Social Issue :

An accident at an illegal coal mine in Meghalaya killed one person and left another battling for his life.


Major Accident in History :

The Newton Chikli Colliery disaster, Chhindwara (M.P.), India occurred on 10 December 1954-112 persons were inside the mine when it was inundated. 49 persons managed to effect their escape through the incline; the remaining 63 persons were entrapped and drowned.

The 1965 Dhanbad coal mine disaster occurred on 28 May 1965, -killed 268 miners.
The Chasnala mining disaster - on 27 December 1975- killed 375 miners.
The Rajpura Dariba Mine VRM disaster took place in Dariba, Udaipur- on 28 August 1994 at a mine operated by Hindustan Zinc Ltd.- All 13 miners in the mine drowned.
In the Meghalaya mining accident on -13 December 2018, 15 miners were trapped in a mine in Ksan

The major reason for the accident :

Excessive flooding in the mine.
E.g The Newton chikli colliery disaster(1954).
An explosion in the mine.
E.g The dhanbad coal mine.
An explosion was followed by flooding in the mine.
E.g The Chasnala mining disaster
Due to non-solidification.
E.g The Rajpura Dariba Mine VRM disaster.
Due to nearby mining to the flooded river. During flood time, River water enters into mine.
E.g The Meghalaya mining accident

Government taken Measures to Prevent Accidents in Coal Mines:

To promote and propagate safety awareness in mines, National Safety Award (Mines), National Conference on Safety in mines is organized by the Directorate General of Mines Safety.
Workers' participation and sensitization in matters of safety are ensured through training in safety and by initiatives like the celebration of safety week and safety campaigns, etc.
Safety training programmes are organized among Managers and Supervisors for improving safety standards in mines.
Risk Assessment Techniques are being introduced aimed at eliminating of risks and to ensure the safety of workmen.
Standard operating procedures are established to avoid unsafe practices in mines.

CIL has established a structured multi-disciplinary Internal Safety Organization (ISO) to assist the line management at various levels in matters related to Safety.
Risk Assessment & Safety Management Plan: CIL has introduced a risk assessment-based Safety Management Plan in its mines. It is an ongoing cyclical process.
Safety Audit of the mines is being conducted from time to time.

Steps for Disaster Prevention:

To check Inundation/ in rush water: Thrust on Risk assessment, Safety Audit, Check Survey, Trials of Geo-physical Methods for detection of water bodies / proving parting etc.
More thrust on construction of sectionalization stopping, Fresh Pressure Quantity Survey, use of Gas Chromatograph to analyze mine air sampling with better accuracy.
Use of Local Methane Detector (LMD) for early and accurate detection of methane belowground for highly gassy mines.

Emphasis on the development of indicators for detecting an impending load on the roof through R&D.
Standard Operating Procedure related to the safe operation of various mining operations.
Safety Management Plan based on Risk Assessment for every opencast has been prepared and implemented.

Way ahead :

Special training programme for safety officers and other key mining officials directly engaged in ensuring safety at the mine by the SIMTARS.High-wall mining has been started at Sharda Opencast Mine of SECL, which is a safe mining system.

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