Petitions for Modification of Application of Existing Mandatory Safety Standards, 14438-14440 [2012-5711]

Download as PDF srobinson on DSK4SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 14438 Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 47 / Friday, March 9, 2012 / Notices Modification Request: The petitioner requests a modification of the existing standard to permit an alternative method of compliance to permit the use of battery-powered non-permissible surveying equipment within 150 feet of pillar workings, including, but not limited to, portable battery operated mine transits, total station surveying equipment, distance meters, and data loggers. The petitioner states that: (1) In order to comply with requirements of 30 CFR 75.372, 75.1002(a), and 75.1200, use of the most practical and accurate surveying equipment is necessary. In order to ensure the safety of the miners in active mines and to protect miners in future mines which may mine in close proximity to these same active mines it is necessary to determine the exact location and extents of the mine workings. (2) Application of the existing standard would result in a diminution of safety to the miners. Underground mining by its nature, size, and complexity of mine plans requires that accurate and precise measurements be completed in a prompt and efficient manner. The petitioner proposes the following as an alternative to the existing standard: (a) Non-permissible electronic surveying equipment will be used when equivalent permissible electronic surveying equipment is not available. Such non-permissible surveying equipment includes portable battery operated total station surveying equipment, mine transits, distance meters, and data loggers. (b) All non-permissible electronic surveying equipment to be used within 150 feet of pillar workings will be examined by surveying personnel prior to use to ensure the equipment is being maintained in a safe operating condition. These examinations will include the following steps: (i) Checking the instrument for any physical damage and the integrity of the case. (ii) Removing the battery and inspect for corrosion. (iii) Inspecting the contact points to ensure a secure connection to the battery. (iv) Reinserting the battery and power up and shut down to ensure proper connections. (v) Checking the battery compartment cover to ensure that it is securely fastened. (c) The results of such examinations will be recorded and retained for one year and made available to MSHA upon request. VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:21 Mar 08, 2012 Jkt 226001 (d) A qualified person as defined in 30 CFR 75.151 will continuously monitor for methane immediately before and during the use of non-permissible surveying equipment within 150 feet of pillar workings. (e) Non-permissible surveying equipment will not be used if methane is detected in concentrations at or above one percent for the area being surveyed. When methane is detected at such levels while the non-permissible surveying equipment is being used, the equipment will be deenergized immediately and the non-permissible electronic equipment withdrawn further than 150 feet from pillar workings. (f) All hand-held methane detectors will be MSHA-approved and maintained in permissible and proper operating condition as defined in 30 CFR 75.320. (g) Batteries contained in the surveying equipment must be changed out or charged in fresh air more than 150 feet from pillar workings. (h) Qualified personnel engaged in the use of surveying equipment will be properly trained to recognize the hazards and limitations associated with the use of non-permissible surveying equipment in areas where methane could be present. (i) The non-permissible surveying equipment will not be put into service until MSHA has initially inspected the equipment and determined that it is in compliance with all the terms and conditions in this petition. (j) Within 60 days after the Proposed Decision and Order becomes final, the petitioner will submit proposed revisions for its approved 30 CFR part 48 training plan to the District Manager. The revisions will specify initial and refresher training regarding the terms and conditions in the Proposed Decision and Order. The petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method will at all times guarantee no less than the same measure of protection as that afforded by the existing standard. Dated: March 5, 2012. Patricia W. Silvey, Certifying Officer. [FR Doc. 2012–5713 Filed 3–8–12; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4510–43–P PO 00000 Frm 00100 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Mine Safety and Health Administration Petitions for Modification of Application of Existing Mandatory Safety Standards Mine Safety and Health Administration, Labor. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: Section 101(c) of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 and Title 30 of the Code of Federal Regulations (30 CFR), part 44 govern the application, processing, and disposition of petitions for modification. This notice is a summary of petitions for modification submitted to the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) by the parties listed below to modify the application of existing mandatory safety standards. DATES: All comments on the petitions must be received by the Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances on or before April 9, 2012. ADDRESSES: You may submit your comments, identified by ‘‘docket number’’ on the subject line, by any of the following methods: 1. Electronic Mail: zzMSHAcomments@dol.gov. Include the docket number of the petition in the subject line of the message. 2. Facsimile: 202–693–9441. 3. Regular Mail: MSHA, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances, 1100 Wilson Boulevard, Room 2350, Arlington, Virginia 22209–3939, Attention: Roslyn B. Fontaine, Acting Director, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances. 4. Hand-Delivery or Courier: MSHA, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances, 1100 Wilson Boulevard, Room 2350, Arlington, Virginia 22209– 3939. Individuals who submit comments by hand-delivery are required to check in at the receptionist’s desk on the 21st floor. Individuals may inspect copies of the petitions and comments during normal business hours at the address listed above. MSHA will consider only comments postmarked by the U.S. Postal Service or proof of delivery from another delivery service such as UPS or Federal Express on or before the deadline for comments. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Barbara Barron, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances at (202) 693– 9447 (Voice), barron.barbara@dol.gov (Email), or 202–693–9441 (Facsimile). [These are not toll-free numbers.] SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\09MRN1.SGM 09MRN1 Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 47 / Friday, March 9, 2012 / Notices I. Background Section 101(c) of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 (Mine Act) allows the mine operator or representative of miners to file a petition to modify the application of any mandatory safety standard to a coal or other mine. The petition may be granted if the Secretary of Labor determines that: (1) An alternative method of achieving the result of such standard exists which will at all times guarantee no less than the same measure of protection afforded the miners of such mine by such standard; or (2) That the application of such standard to such mine will result in a diminution of safety to the miners in such mine. In addition, the regulations at 30 CFR 44.10 and 44.11 establish the requirements and procedures for filing petitions for modification. srobinson on DSK4SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES II. Petitions for Modification Docket Number: M–2012–004–C. Petitioner: Little Buck Coal Company, 33 Pine Lane, Pine Grove, Pennsylvania 17963. Mine: Little Buck Slope, MSHA I.D. No. 36–09958, 33 Pine Lane, Pine Grove, Pennsylvania 17963, located in Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania. Regulation Affected: 30 CFR 75.1200(d) & (i) Mine map). Modification Request: The petitioner requests a modification of the existing standard to permit the use of crosssections in lieu of contour lines on mine maps through the intake slope, at locations of rock tunnel connections between veins, and at 1,000 feet intervals of advance from the intake slope. In addition, the petitioner proposes to limit the required mapping of mine workings above and below to those present within 100 feet of the vein(s) being mined unless the veins are interconnected to other veins beyond the 100 feet limit through rock tunnels. The petitioner states that: (1) Due to the steep pitch encountered in mining anthracite coal veins, contours provide no useful information and their presence would make portions of the map illegible. (2) The use of cross-sections in lieu of contour lines has been practiced since the late 1800’s and provides critical information about spacing between veins and proximity to other mine workings, which fluctuate considerably. (3) The vast majority of current underground anthracite mining involves either second mining of remnant pillars from previous mining or the mining of veins of lower quality in proximity to VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:21 Mar 08, 2012 Jkt 226001 inaccessible and frequently flooded abandoned mine workings that may or may not be mapped. (4) All mapping for mines above and below is researched by the petitioner’s contract engineer for the presence of interconnecting rock tunnels between veins in relation to the mine, and a hazard analysis is done when mapping indicates the presence of known or potentially flooded workings. (5) When no rock tunnel connections are found, mine workings that exist beyond 100 feet from our mine, are recognized as presenting no hazard to the mine due to the pitch of the vein and rock separation. (6) Additionally, the mine workings above and below are usually inactive and abandoned and, therefore, are not usually subject to changes during the life of the mine. (7) Where evidence indicates prior mining was conducted on a vein above or below and research exhausts the availability of mine mapping, the vein will be considered mined and flooded and appropriate precautions will be taken through § 75.388, which addresses drilling boreholes in advance of mining, where possible. (8) Where potential hazards exist and in-mine drilling capabilities limit penetration, surface boreholes may be used to intercept the workings and the results analyzed prior to beginning mining in the affected area. The petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method will provide no less than the same measure of protection afforded the miners under the existing standard. Docket Number: M–2012–005–C. Petitioner: Little Buck Coal Company, 33 Pine Lane, Pine Grove, Pennsylvania 17963. Mine: Little Buck Slope, MSHA I.D. No. 36–09958, 33 Pine Lane, Pine Grove, Pennsylvania 17963, located in Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania. Regulation Affected: 30 CFR 75.1202 and 75.1202–1(a) (Temporary notations, revisions and requirements). Modification Request: The petitioner requests a modification of the existing standard to permit the interval of survey to be established on an annual basis from the initial survey in lieu of every 6 months as required. The petitioner proposes to continue to update the mine map by hand notations on a daily basis and conduct subsequent surveys prior to commencing retreat mining, and whenever either a drilling program under § 75.388 or plan for mining into inaccessible areas under § 75.389 is required. The petitioner states that: (1) The low production and slow rate of advance in anthracite mining make PO 00000 Frm 00101 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 14439 surveying on 6-month intervals impractical. In most cases annual development is frequently limited to less than 500 feet of gangway advance with associated up-pitch development. (2) The vast majority of small anthracite mines are non-mechanized and use hand-loading mining methods. (3) Development above the active gangway is designed to mine into the level above at designated intervals thereby maintaining sufficient control between both surveyed gangways. (4) The available engineering/ surveyor resources are limited in the anthracite coal fields and surveying on an annual basis is difficult to achieve with four individual contractors currently available. The petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method will provide no less than the same measure of protection afforded the miners under the existing standard. Docket Number: M–2012–006–C. Petitioner: Little Buck Coal Company, 33 Pine Lane, Pine Grove, Pennsylvania 17963. Mine: Little Buck Slope, MSHA I.D. No. 36–09958, 33 Pine Lane, Pine Grove, Pennsylvania 17963, located in Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania. Regulation Affected: 30 CFR 75.1400 (Hoisting equipment; general). Modification Request: The petitioner requests a modification of the existing standard for cages, platforms, or other devices used to transport persons in shafts or slopes in underground coal mines. The petitioner seeks to permit the use of a slope conveyance (gunboat) to transport persons without installing safety catches or other no less effective devices but instead use an increased rope strength/safety factor and secondary safety rope connection in place of such devices. The petitioner states that: (1) The haulage slope of this anthracite mine is typical of those in the anthracite region, with a relatively high angle and frequently changing pitches. (2) A functional safety catch capable of working in slopes with knuckles and curves is not commercially available. A makeshift device would be activated on or by knuckles or curves when no emergency exists. Activation of a safety catch can or will damage the haulage system and subject persons being transported to hazards from dislodged timbering, roof material, or guide rails, and to being battered about within the conveyance. (3) A safer alternative is to provide secondary safety connections securely fastened around the gunboat and to the hoisting rope above the main termination and use a hoisting rope E:\FR\FM\09MRN1.SGM 09MRN1 srobinson on DSK4SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 14440 Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 47 / Friday, March 9, 2012 / Notices having a safety factor greater than that recommended in the American Standards Specifications for the Use of Wire Rope in Mines or at least three times greater than the strength required under section § 75.1431(a). The petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method will provide no less than the same measure of protection afforded the miners under the existing standard. Docket Number: M–2012–007–C. Petitioner: RoxCoal, Inc., 1576 Stoystown Road, Friedens, Pennsylvania 15541. Mines: Agustus Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 36–08636; Barbara #2 Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 36–08508; Horning Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 36–09666; Kimberly Run Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 36–09549; Quecreek #1 Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 36–08746; Roytown Deep Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 36–09260; Sarah Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 36–08571; all located in Somerset County, Pennsylvania. Regulation Affected: 30 CFR 75.503 (Permissible electric face equipment; maintenance) and 30 CFR 18.35(a)(2) (Portable (trailing) cables and cords). Modification Request: The petitioner requests a modification of the existing standard to permit an alternative method of compliance with the 10 American Wire Gauge (AWG) Cable. The petitioner proposes to use MSHA approved five (5) conductor 10 AWG cable (SO cable) with a diameter of .77 with a tolerance of +/¥0.03. The petitioner states that: (1) The cable will hang on insulated hangers for the entire length at all times. (2) Within 60 days after the Proposed Decision and Order becomes final, the petitioner will submit proposed revisions for its approved 30 CFR part 48 training plan to the District Manager. In addition to the requirement specified in item 1, these proposed revisions will specify initial and refresher training regarding the terms and conditions stated in the Proposed Decision and Order. The petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method will at all times guarantee no less than the same measure of protection afforded by the standard. Dated: March 5, 2012. Patricia W. Silvey, Certifying Officer. [FR Doc. 2012–5711 Filed 3–8–12; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4510–43–P VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:21 Mar 08, 2012 Jkt 226001 NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION Notice of Information Collection National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). NOTICE: (12–020). ACTION: Notice of information collection. AGENCY: The National Aeronautics and Space Administration, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing information collections, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104–13, 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)). DATES: All comments should be submitted within 60 calendar days from the date of this publication. ADDRESSES: All comments should be addressed to Ms. Frances Teel, JF000, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Washington, DC 20546– 0001. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Requests for additional information or copies of the information collection instrument(s) and instructions should be directed to Frances Teel, NASA Clearance Officer, NASA Headquarters, 300 E Street SW., JF0000, Washington, DC 20546, Frances.C.Teel@nasa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: I. Abstract To ensure accurate reporting of Government-owned, contractor-held property on the financial statements and to provide information necessary for effective property management, NASA obtains summary data annually from the official Government property records maintained by its contractors, on the NASA Form 1018, as of the end of the fiscal year. II. Method of Collection Electronic. III. Data Title: NASA Property in the Custody of Contractors. OMB Number: 2700–0017. Type of Review: Revision of currently approved collection. Affected Public: Business or other forprofit and not-for-profit institutions. Estimated Number of Respondents: 1092. Estimated Time per Response: Variable. Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 9805 hours. Estimated Total Annual Cost: $0.00. PO 00000 Frm 00102 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 IV. Request for Comments Comments are invited on: (1) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of NASA, including whether the information collected has practical utility; (2) the accuracy of NASA’s estimate of the burden (including hours and cost) of the proposed collection of information; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including automated collection techniques or the use of other forms of information technology. Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and included in the request for OMB approval of this information collection. They will also become a matter of public record. Frances Teel, NASA PRA Clearance Officer. [FR Doc. 2012–5681 Filed 3–8–12; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7510–13–P NATIONAL FOUNDATION FOR THE ARTS AND THE HUMANITIES National Council on the Arts 175th Meeting National Endowment for the Arts, National Foundation on the Arts and Humanities. ACTION: Notice—Meeting. AGENCY: Pursuant to section 10(a)(2) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (Pub. L. 92–463), as amended, notice is hereby given that a meeting of the National Council on the Arts will be held on March 30, 2012, in Room M–09 at the Nancy Hanks Center, 1100 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20506. This meeting, from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Friday, March 30th in Room M– 09 (ending time is approximate), will be open to the public on a space available basis. The meeting will begin with opening remarks and voting on recommendations for funding and rejection and guidelines, followed by updates by the Chairman. From 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. there will be presentations on Operation Homecoming and the healing arts programs at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Arts and Achievement in At-Risk Youth: Findings From Four Longitudinal Studies, and an overview of NEA Arts and podcasts. The meeting will adjourn following concluding remarks and announcement of voting results. E:\FR\FM\09MRN1.SGM 09MRN1

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[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 47 (Friday, March 9, 2012)]
[Notices]
[Pages 14438-14440]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-5711]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

Mine Safety and Health Administration


Petitions for Modification of Application of Existing Mandatory 
Safety Standards

AGENCY: Mine Safety and Health Administration, Labor.

ACTION: Notice.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: Section 101(c) of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 
1977 and Title 30 of the Code of Federal Regulations (30 CFR), part 44 
govern the application, processing, and disposition of petitions for 
modification. This notice is a summary of petitions for modification 
submitted to the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) by the 
parties listed below to modify the application of existing mandatory 
safety standards.

DATES: All comments on the petitions must be received by the Office of 
Standards, Regulations, and Variances on or before April 9, 2012.

ADDRESSES: You may submit your comments, identified by ``docket 
number'' on the subject line, by any of the following methods:
    1. Electronic Mail: zzMSHA-comments@dol.gov. Include the docket 
number of the petition in the subject line of the message.
    2. Facsimile: 202-693-9441.
    3. Regular Mail: MSHA, Office of Standards, Regulations, and 
Variances, 1100 Wilson Boulevard, Room 2350, Arlington, Virginia 22209-
3939, Attention: Roslyn B. Fontaine, Acting Director, Office of 
Standards, Regulations, and Variances.
    4. Hand-Delivery or Courier: MSHA, Office of Standards, 
Regulations, and Variances, 1100 Wilson Boulevard, Room 2350, 
Arlington, Virginia 22209-3939. Individuals who submit comments by 
hand-delivery are required to check in at the receptionist's desk on 
the 21st floor. Individuals may inspect copies of the petitions and 
comments during normal business hours at the address listed above.
    MSHA will consider only comments postmarked by the U.S. Postal 
Service or proof of delivery from another delivery service such as UPS 
or Federal Express on or before the deadline for comments.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Barbara Barron, Office of Standards, 
Regulations, and Variances at (202) 693-9447 (Voice), 
barron.barbara@dol.gov (Email), or 202-693-9441 (Facsimile). [These are 
not toll-free numbers.]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

[[Page 14439]]

I. Background

    Section 101(c) of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 
(Mine Act) allows the mine operator or representative of miners to file 
a petition to modify the application of any mandatory safety standard 
to a coal or other mine. The petition may be granted if the Secretary 
of Labor determines that:
    (1) An alternative method of achieving the result of such standard 
exists which will at all times guarantee no less than the same measure 
of protection afforded the miners of such mine by such standard; or
    (2) That the application of such standard to such mine will result 
in a diminution of safety to the miners in such mine.
    In addition, the regulations at 30 CFR 44.10 and 44.11 establish 
the requirements and procedures for filing petitions for modification.

II. Petitions for Modification

    Docket Number: M-2012-004-C.
    Petitioner: Little Buck Coal Company, 33 Pine Lane, Pine Grove, 
Pennsylvania 17963.
    Mine: Little Buck Slope, MSHA I.D. No. 36-09958, 33 Pine Lane, Pine 
Grove, Pennsylvania 17963, located in Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania.
    Regulation Affected: 30 CFR 75.1200(d) & (i) Mine map).
    Modification Request: The petitioner requests a modification of the 
existing standard to permit the use of cross-sections in lieu of 
contour lines on mine maps through the intake slope, at locations of 
rock tunnel connections between veins, and at 1,000 feet intervals of 
advance from the intake slope. In addition, the petitioner proposes to 
limit the required mapping of mine workings above and below to those 
present within 100 feet of the vein(s) being mined unless the veins are 
interconnected to other veins beyond the 100 feet limit through rock 
tunnels. The petitioner states that:
    (1) Due to the steep pitch encountered in mining anthracite coal 
veins, contours provide no useful information and their presence would 
make portions of the map illegible.
    (2) The use of cross-sections in lieu of contour lines has been 
practiced since the late 1800's and provides critical information about 
spacing between veins and proximity to other mine workings, which 
fluctuate considerably.
    (3) The vast majority of current underground anthracite mining 
involves either second mining of remnant pillars from previous mining 
or the mining of veins of lower quality in proximity to inaccessible 
and frequently flooded abandoned mine workings that may or may not be 
mapped.
    (4) All mapping for mines above and below is researched by the 
petitioner's contract engineer for the presence of interconnecting rock 
tunnels between veins in relation to the mine, and a hazard analysis is 
done when mapping indicates the presence of known or potentially 
flooded workings.
    (5) When no rock tunnel connections are found, mine workings that 
exist beyond 100 feet from our mine, are recognized as presenting no 
hazard to the mine due to the pitch of the vein and rock separation.
    (6) Additionally, the mine workings above and below are usually 
inactive and abandoned and, therefore, are not usually subject to 
changes during the life of the mine.
    (7) Where evidence indicates prior mining was conducted on a vein 
above or below and research exhausts the availability of mine mapping, 
the vein will be considered mined and flooded and appropriate 
precautions will be taken through Sec.  75.388, which addresses 
drilling boreholes in advance of mining, where possible.
    (8) Where potential hazards exist and in-mine drilling capabilities 
limit penetration, surface boreholes may be used to intercept the 
workings and the results analyzed prior to beginning mining in the 
affected area.
    The petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method will 
provide no less than the same measure of protection afforded the miners 
under the existing standard.
    Docket Number: M-2012-005-C.
    Petitioner: Little Buck Coal Company, 33 Pine Lane, Pine Grove, 
Pennsylvania 17963.
    Mine: Little Buck Slope, MSHA I.D. No. 36-09958, 33 Pine Lane, Pine 
Grove, Pennsylvania 17963, located in Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania.
    Regulation Affected: 30 CFR 75.1202 and 75.1202-1(a) (Temporary 
notations, revisions and requirements).
    Modification Request: The petitioner requests a modification of the 
existing standard to permit the interval of survey to be established on 
an annual basis from the initial survey in lieu of every 6 months as 
required. The petitioner proposes to continue to update the mine map by 
hand notations on a daily basis and conduct subsequent surveys prior to 
commencing retreat mining, and whenever either a drilling program under 
Sec.  75.388 or plan for mining into inaccessible areas under Sec.  
75.389 is required. The petitioner states that:
    (1) The low production and slow rate of advance in anthracite 
mining make surveying on 6-month intervals impractical. In most cases 
annual development is frequently limited to less than 500 feet of 
gangway advance with associated up-pitch development.
    (2) The vast majority of small anthracite mines are non-mechanized 
and use hand-loading mining methods.
    (3) Development above the active gangway is designed to mine into 
the level above at designated intervals thereby maintaining sufficient 
control between both surveyed gangways.
    (4) The available engineering/surveyor resources are limited in the 
anthracite coal fields and surveying on an annual basis is difficult to 
achieve with four individual contractors currently available.
    The petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method will 
provide no less than the same measure of protection afforded the miners 
under the existing standard.
    Docket Number: M-2012-006-C.
    Petitioner: Little Buck Coal Company, 33 Pine Lane, Pine Grove, 
Pennsylvania 17963.
    Mine: Little Buck Slope, MSHA I.D. No. 36-09958, 33 Pine Lane, Pine 
Grove, Pennsylvania 17963, located in Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania.
    Regulation Affected: 30 CFR 75.1400 (Hoisting equipment; general).
    Modification Request: The petitioner requests a modification of the 
existing standard for cages, platforms, or other devices used to 
transport persons in shafts or slopes in underground coal mines. The 
petitioner seeks to permit the use of a slope conveyance (gunboat) to 
transport persons without installing safety catches or other no less 
effective devices but instead use an increased rope strength/safety 
factor and secondary safety rope connection in place of such devices. 
The petitioner states that:
    (1) The haulage slope of this anthracite mine is typical of those 
in the anthracite region, with a relatively high angle and frequently 
changing pitches.
    (2) A functional safety catch capable of working in slopes with 
knuckles and curves is not commercially available. A makeshift device 
would be activated on or by knuckles or curves when no emergency 
exists. Activation of a safety catch can or will damage the haulage 
system and subject persons being transported to hazards from dislodged 
timbering, roof material, or guide rails, and to being battered about 
within the conveyance.
    (3) A safer alternative is to provide secondary safety connections 
securely fastened around the gunboat and to the hoisting rope above the 
main termination and use a hoisting rope

[[Page 14440]]

having a safety factor greater than that recommended in the American 
Standards Specifications for the Use of Wire Rope in Mines or at least 
three times greater than the strength required under section Sec.  
75.1431(a).
    The petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method will 
provide no less than the same measure of protection afforded the miners 
under the existing standard.
    Docket Number: M-2012-007-C.
    Petitioner: RoxCoal, Inc., 1576 Stoystown Road, Friedens, 
Pennsylvania 15541.
    Mines: Agustus Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 36-08636; Barbara 2 
Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 36-08508; Horning Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 36-09666; 
Kimberly Run Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 36-09549; Quecreek 1 Mine, 
MSHA I.D. No. 36-08746; Roytown Deep Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 36-09260; 
Sarah Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 36-08571; all located in Somerset County, 
Pennsylvania.
    Regulation Affected: 30 CFR 75.503 (Permissible electric face 
equipment; maintenance) and 30 CFR 18.35(a)(2) (Portable (trailing) 
cables and cords).
    Modification Request: The petitioner requests a modification of the 
existing standard to permit an alternative method of compliance with 
the 10 American Wire Gauge (AWG) Cable. The petitioner proposes to use 
MSHA approved five (5) conductor 10 AWG cable (SO cable) with a 
diameter of .77 with a tolerance of +/-0.03. The petitioner states 
that:
    (1) The cable will hang on insulated hangers for the entire length 
at all times.
    (2) Within 60 days after the Proposed Decision and Order becomes 
final, the petitioner will submit proposed revisions for its approved 
30 CFR part 48 training plan to the District Manager. In addition to 
the requirement specified in item 1, these proposed revisions will 
specify initial and refresher training regarding the terms and 
conditions stated in the Proposed Decision and Order.
    The petitioner asserts that the proposed alternative method will at 
all times guarantee no less than the same measure of protection 
afforded by the standard.

     Dated: March 5, 2012.
Patricia W. Silvey,
Certifying Officer.
[FR Doc. 2012-5711 Filed 3-8-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4510-43-P