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Safety blitz targets water in underground mines

| www.cos-mag.com

Ontario will target water accumulation and related hazards during a two-month enforcement blitz to protect workers in underground mines this winter.

In February and March mining inspectors and engineers will check for hazards that could cause water to build up and infiltrate ore passes and raises (verticle shafts), ore storage bins and other areas in underground mines across Ontario.

“Workers are at risk of serious injury and death if water is not managed properly and allowed to accumulate," said George Gritziotis, chief prevention officer.

Inspectors will check that the mines have good water management practices and proper procedures to assess and address hazards to protect workers.

The inspectors and engineers will check that employers are complying with the Occupational Health and Safety Act and its regulations.

The provincial government is also conducting a comprehensive mining safety review to further the health and safety of mine workers.

Between 2000 and 2014, three workers died in Ontario mines after being engulfed by runs of material due to the material being saturated with water.

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