After their outstanding performances in local and regional competitions earlier this year, the four mine rescue teams from Carmeuse Black River, Luttrell, Maysville and North Georgia once again demonstrated their skills and received significant recognition for their work during the 2016 National Mine Rescue Competition.
The annual competition, held July 25-28 in Reno, Nev., saw the Carmeuse teams competing against each other and 31 other mine rescue teams from around the United States. Each team put their mine rescue skills to the test as they faced challenging situations in the field, first aid, team training and technician team competitions.
The Maysville Raiders and Black River Bandits placed third and fifth, respectively, in the first aid competition. In the technician team competition, the Black River Bandits placed second and Georgia Team Thunder placed sixth.
In addition, two Carmeuse employees were honored for their years of hard work and dedication to mine rescue by being inducted into the Mine Safety and Health Administration’s Mine Rescue Hall of Fame.
Mark Davis, area operations manager for the Southern Region, and Gary Lewis, site operations manager at Black River, both began their mining careers in 1976, and their mine rescue careers in 1978. Each have participated in several national and regional contests since their first mine rescue competition in 1984. During their 39-year mine rescue careers, they have encountered dangerous mine events including fires, roof falls, gas, water, structural failures, electrical hazards and victim recovery. Davis and Lewis have trained and served in various mine rescue positions, including as the Carmeuse representatives at the command center during several cases of mine rescue work.
They have both lead efforts to improve mine rescue teams by increasing resources, motivation, involvement and training at several Carmeuse underground operating sites. This was the last competition for Lewis, Black River team captain, as he is retiring from the mine rescue team.
Members of mine rescue teams are highly trained in order to ensure they are prepared to face extremely dangerous situations and overcome mining challenges. Mine rescue competitions are an opportunity for teams to test their skills and knowledge in a variety of complex field, written and technical competitions.