The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Mining Program, in conjunction with the Essential Minerals Association, the National Mining Association, and the National Stone, Sand & Gravel Association, recognized organizations in their respective industry sectors, some for developing new safety equipment and systems. Two of the award categories were industrial minerals; and stone, sand and gravel.
And in the stone, sand, and gravel category, Peckham Industries won an award for its implementation of a strategic stope hole at its Wingdale, N.Y., underground aggregates operation to deliver rock mined in the surface quarry down to the underground operation close to the primary and secondary crushers.
In doing so, the mine brought more workers above ground to safer conditions, eliminated excessive transport time needed to move the crushers, and addressed community concerns about noise, dust, and visual impacts of the mine. Using the stope hole has also allowed the mine to eliminate long haul distances on steep grades, leave a scenic ridge untouched, and realize efficiencies in equipment, fuel, and time.
Genesis Alkali won the industrial minerals award for developing an improved extraction well system that utilizes a well casing and an extension casing to ensure isolation of electrical components from potentially hazardous mine gases.
Invented by Genesis Alkali’s engineers, the technology provides an extra layer of protection to ensure the electrical components are isolated from the mine atmosphere while still allowing water to enter the pump intake. Permit applications are pending that will allow the company’s Westvaco Mine to implement the technology.
“It is a benefit to the entire mining industry to have such innovative approaches tackle both new and persistent challenges,” said NIOSH Associate Director for Mining Jessica Kogel, Ph.D.
The NIOSH Mining Program invites nominations throughout the year for its awards series, which offers awards in four different mining industry sectors. For more information, visit the awards webpage.