MSHA awards $1m in 2016 Brookwood-Sago grants

MSHA has awarded $1m in 2016 Brookwood-Sago grants. The funding will foster mine rescue training, mine emergency preparedness, MSHA says.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration has awarded $1 million to six organizations to develop training programs and materials that support mine rescue and mine emergency preparedness for underground mines.

A provision in the Mine Improvement and New Emergency Response Act of 2006 established the Brookwood-Sago grant program to promote mine safety while honoring the 25 men who died in Brookwood, Alabama, in 2001 at the Jim Walter Resources #5 mine, and in Buchannon, West Virginia, in 2006 at the Sago Mine.

The recipients of the 2016 grants are:

  • The Colorado School of Mines in Golden is receiving $240,024 in funding to provide quality training to mine rescue teams. The training will focus on enhancing the knowledge and skills for mine rescue teams and incident command staff in the areas of technical rescue, communications and decision making during mine emergencies
  • Rend Lake College in Ina, Illinois, is receiving $133,240 in funding to provide training to mine rescue officials and mine rescue teams, with a focus on mine fire brigade training and increased preparedness for those participating for mine emergencies.
  • The Colorado Department of Natural Resources in Denver is receiving $217,877 in funding to provide advanced mine rescue skills training for all underground mines and mine emergency prevention in Colorado
  • The University of Arizona in Tucson is receiving $187,054 in funding to improve self-escape skills in response to underground mine emergency events by use of virtual reality gaming.
  • The Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy in Big Stone Gap is receiving $50,000 in funding to develop training materials and provide training on mine emergency preparedness and mine emergency prevention.
  • West Virginia University in Morgantown is receiving $171,805 in funding to foster the development and implementation of enhanced and realistic mine rescue training exercises that combine the efforts and abilities of a mine rescue team and fire brigade responding to a simulated coal mine fire emergency and locating missing personnel.
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