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Judge Rejects Recent Settlements Between Secretary and Operators

By Ellen Smith

If your company is looking to settle a case for MSHA citations that were initially contested, have all of the justifications in place for any significant penalty reduction, or be ready for protracted proceedings to get approval from a Commission judge.
ALJ William Moran recently rejected two settlements where the attorney for the Secretary refused to voluntarily produce the information that could have justified steep reductions in the penalties – anywhere from a 25 percent to a 70 percent reduction.

 

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Sweat What Counts, Even If It Is ‘Small Stuff’

By Randy K. Logsdon

A popular “big picture” management recommendation suggests that management focus should be on the highly critical issues that have potentially broad effect and if not addressed properly may have potentially catastrophic consequences.
The descriptive phrase is “Don’t sweat the small stuff.”

 

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A Different Perspective

By Randy K. Logsdon

A tool that MSHA is using in its continuing initiative to reverse the trend in fatal injuries experienced recently in the Metal/Non-Metal segment of the mining industry is a “2014 Fatal Comparison Chart” that constitutes a breakdown of how, when and to whom the fatal injuries occurred. This was produced from preliminary data accumulated during the 2014 calendar year concerning 28 fatal injury incidents.

 

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Company Fined $20,000 For Discrimination Case

By Ellen Smith

Judge John Kent Lewis fined a mining company $20,000, and said it was highly negligent where a miner had been temporarily suspended, given a written warning and a negative evaluation, after complaining to management on three occasions about a possible electrical fan violation in a laboratory, which was then cited by MSHA.

Read more: Company Fined $20,000 For Discrimination Case

Main Warns Against Safety Programs That Deter Reporting Injuries

In a letter to industry stakeholders, Joseph A. Main, assistant secretary of labor for mine safety and health, warned against safety and health programs that deter the reporting of injuries.

 

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