The National Stone, Sand & Gravel Association (NSSGA) organized a day-long tour for the Mine Safety & Health Administration’s (MSHA) Assistant Secretary Chris Williamson along with seven other Department of Labor/MSHA staff at Luck Stone’s Bull Run facility in Virginia. This was the Assistant Secretary’s first tour of an aggregates quarry and his first mine tour since starting at MSHA. This was followed by the first NSSGA-MSHA Alliance working meeting.
“NSSGA is known for creating and building relationships for the aggregates industry in Washington, and this tour is a prime example of that,” said Michele Stanley, vice president of government and regulatory affairs, NSSGA. “The best way to fully understand our industry’s commitment to safety and health is to spend time at the quarry, observing the work environment and talking with employees about their experiences. We thank the Assistant Secretary and his team for our important working relationship, as well as those at Luck Stone for providing the great tour to showcase how the industry works.”
The Luck Stone team began the day with a safety briefing and a presentation about their company’s safety journey. The group then toured the site and experienced the full process of aggregates mining, from the quarry to the plant to materials going out the gate.
“We were honored to host Assistant Secretary Williamson and his team at our Bull Run Plant,” said Abel Parker, director of risk management, Luck Stone. “It was a great opportunity to demonstrate our commitment to our associates’ safety, health and overall wellbeing. We appreciate the Assistant Secretary and his team for making the time to tour our facility and view firsthand all that goes into the production of a critical element of our nation’s infrastructure, construction aggregates.”
The first NSSGA-MSHA Alliance working meeting was attended by producer members from around the U.S. These in-person meetings were a goal stemming from NSSGA’s Annual Convention so members could reconnect throughout the year. During the meeting, the Alliance identified specific projects, initiatives and goals that will improve the health and safety of miners throughout the country.
The key topics discussed included education and training on how companies can best use MSHA data available online; creating an aggregates-specific quarterly data digest; promoting total worker health; and drafting white papers.