Petitions for Modification of Application of Existing Mandatory Safety Standards, 9234-9236 [2017-02297]

Download as PDF 9234 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 22 / Friday, February 3, 2017 / Notices This ICR seeks continued PRA authorization for Job Corps application data collected on three forms (ETA–652, Job Corps Data Sheet; ETA–655, Statement from Court or Other Agency; and ETA–682, Child Care Certification) used for screening and enrollment purposes to determine eligibility for the Job Corp program in accordance with Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) requirements. The information collected concerns economic criteria and past behavior as well as information needed to certify an applicant’s arrangements for care of dependent children while the applicant is in the Job Corps. WIOA section 145 authorizes this information collection. See 29 U.S.C. 3196. This information collection is subject to the PRA. A Federal agency generally cannot conduct or sponsor a collection of information, and the public is generally not required to respond to an information collection, unless it is approved by the OMB under the PRA and displays a currently valid OMB Control Number. In addition, notwithstanding any other provisions of law, no person shall generally be subject to penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information that does not display a valid Control Number. See 5 CFR 1320.5(a) and 1320.6. The DOL obtains OMB approval for this information collection under Control Number 1205–0025. OMB authorization for an ICR cannot be for more than three (3) years without renewal, and the current approval for this collection is scheduled to expire on January 31, 2017. The DOL seeks to extend PRA authorization for this information collection for three (3) more years, without any change to existing requirements. The DOL notes that existing information collection requirements submitted to the OMB receive a month-to-month extension while they undergo review. For additional substantive information about this ICR, see the related notice published in the Federal Register on November 29, 2016 (81 FR 86015). Interested parties are encouraged to send comments to the OMB, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs at the address shown in the ADDRESSES section by March 2, 2017. In order to help ensure appropriate consideration, comments should mention OMB Control Number 1205–0025. The OMB is particularly interested in comments that: • Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including asabaliauskas on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:26 Feb 02, 2017 Jkt 241001 whether the information will have practical utility; • Evaluate the accuracy of the agency’s estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; • Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and • Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses. Agency: DOL–ETA. Title of Collection: Job Corps Application Data. OMB Control Number: 1205–0025. Affected Public: Individuals and Households. Total Estimated Number of Respondents: 139,955. Total Estimated Number of Responses: 139,955. Total Estimated Annual Time Burden: 12,556 hours. Total Estimated Annual Other Costs Burden: $ 0. Dated: January 25, 2017. Michel Smyth, Departmental Clearance Officer. [FR Doc. 2017–02319 Filed 2–2–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4510–FT–P 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 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. DATES: All comments on the petitions must be received by MSHA’s Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances on or before March 6, 2017. ADDRESSES: You may submit your comments, identified by ‘‘docket SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00044 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 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 or Hand Delivery: MSHA, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances, 201 12th Street South, Suite 4E401, Arlington, Virginia 22202–5452, Attention: Sheila McConnell, Director, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances. Persons delivering documents are required to check in at the receptionist’s desk in Suite 4E401. 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: 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 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–2016–009–M. Petitioner: Coeur Alaska, Inc., 1700 Lincoln Street, Suite 4700, Denver, Colorado 80203. Mine: Kensington Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 50–01544, located in Juneau County, Alaska. Regulation Affected: 30 CFR 57.11052(d) (refuge areas). Modification Request: The petitioner requests a modification of the existing E:\FR\FM\03FEN1.SGM 03FEN1 asabaliauskas on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 22 / Friday, February 3, 2017 / Notices standard for refuge areas applied to the development and exploration areas at its Kensington mine. The petitioner seeks approval to use the recently installed Strata-manufactured, 12-person emergency refuge chambers—portable (ERCP), which are equipped with internal air and water supplies, without having to provide compressed air and waterlines. The petitioner states that: (1) On July 12, 2016, Coeur submitted a petition for modification (PFM #1) seeking relief from § 57.11050. PFM #1 seeks relief from MSHA’s requirement that Coeur provides a refuge chamber within 1,000 feet of the development face in the mine. During Coeur’s discussions with MSHA as part of the review of PFM #1 and Coeur’s compliance with § 57.11050, Coeur learned that a second petition for modification (PFM #2) was necessary to seek relief from § 57.11052(d). The petitioner requests that MSHA consider PFM #2 in conjunction with information submitted previously for PFM #1 because the factual basis for both petitions and means of compliance for both standards are intertwined. These means of compliance will provide the same or greater measure of safety as the existing regulations. (2) The petitioner owns and operates the Kensington mine, an underground gold mine located in Juneau County, Alaska. Kensington utilizes both transverse and longitudinal long-hole stoping. In both methods, a single development drift is driven through waste rock adjacent to the ore body. When this drift reaches planned elevations, level accesses are developed to provide entry points to the ore body for exploration and later ore production. Once the level development and exploration are completed at a planned elevation, the ore is extracted either perpendicular (transverse stoping) or parallel to the strike of the ore (longitudinal stoping). (3) With PFM #1, Coeur sought relief from MSHA’s interpretation of 30 CFR 57.11050 that would require that a refuge chamber be located within 1,000 feet of the development face. Part of the basis for PFM #1 is that the petitioner’s miners at the development face can walk to the existing refuge chamber within 30 minutes as required by the standard and the existing location of the permanent refuge chamber complies with § 57.11050. Also, the petitioner has voluntarily elected to provide an ERCP in the vicinity of the development face, and to reposition that ERCP from time to time as development advances. (4) Because ERCP is equipped with a minimum of a 72-hour internal air supply for up to 12 miners, and more VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:26 Feb 02, 2017 Jkt 241001 than 20 gallons of potable water, the petitioner seeks relief from the requirement in § 57.11052(d) to connect compressed air and waterlines to the ECRP each time it is repositioned. (5) The ERCP as constructed by the manufacturer complies with § 57.11052 because the ERCP has internal air and water sources. Kensington has been in operation since 1987. The petitioner has operated the mine since 1995, and between 1995 and 2009, activities were exclusively exploration and development. Coeur did not begin production until 2010, with limited production areas. The portions of the Kensington mine that are relevant to PFM #2 are still in the exploration and development phases—no production is occurring in these areas. During the fourth quarter of 2016, Kensington typically had nine stopes associated with production, and approximately three main development drifts in which exploration and development are taking place. The precise number of stopes and drifts may vary slightly from one month to the next. Currently, 100 percent of Kensington’s operations below the 480 level are either development or exploration. At present, the ERCP is positioned within 1,000 feet from the development face, and the current location of Kensington’s permanent refuge station adjacent to the 585 Downramp complies with the requirements of §§ 57.11050 and 57.11052(d) because the miners working in the development area can reach it within 30 minutes, and compressed airlines and waterlines are installed at that station. (6) The ERCP is located directly below the 330 level access, and has air and waterlines connected to it. However, the ERCP will not remain in this location permanently. The petitioner will relocate the ERCP in the future as development activities advance. The ERCP is more than a reinforced metal compartment to physically shield miners following an underground emergency—it is a self-contained chamber with own sources for electrical power, breathable air, water, food, and a lavatory. Even without being connected to mine services, the ERCP can provide electrical power and breathable air to occupants for a minimum of 72 hours if the atmosphere outside the ERCP is contaminated. The ERCP is equipped with enough potable water to last three days with up to 12 occupants. (7) Section 57.11052(d) requires that every refuge area be provided with compressed air lines, waterlines, suitable hand tools, and stopping PO 00000 Frm 00045 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 9235 materials. Based on our research, there is no regulatory or judicial history that explains the purpose behind a requirement for compressed air lines and waterlines. Accordingly, petitioner assumes that these lines are intended to serve the purpose a reasonably prudent person, familiar with the mining industry, would expect—to provide a source of breathable air and potable water to miners inside a refuge area. As a matter of simple logic, an operator complies with § 57.11052(d) by prepositioning hand tools and stoping materials inside the refuge area for future use. Similarly, if air and water could be prepositioned in a refuge area for future use, the operator would be complying with the standard. Historically, it was difficult to ensure that sufficient breathable air and potable water would be available in a refuge area. Today, the technology behind the ERCP enables the petitioner to provide a sustainable environment for its miners and a viable time window for mine rescue teams to reach the ERCP following an emergency, thereby rendering the requirement for external air waterlines obsolete—particularly when the ERCP is a supplemental device in addition to Kensington’s existing permanent refuge stations. (8) Section 57.11052(d) does not specify a minimum quantity, volume or pressure for air lines and water lines, and the regulation makes no mention of independent power sources or lengths of time the air and waterlines need to be available at the refuge area. The standard simply requires they be provided. The ERCP provides breathable air and potable water. Kensington already complies with the standards requirement. This capability to provide known quantities of air and water internally is a benefit to the ERCP occupants because there is no risk of interrupted air and water access from external damage to the lines, and the known quantities allow mine rescue teams to make informed decisions regarding the length of time that an ERCP can provide a sustainable environment for its occupants. (9) Installing air lines and water lines each time the ERCP is relocated to remain in proximity to the development face would result in a diminution of safety; however, requested relief provides an equivalent degree of safety to § 57.11051(d). Kensington’s underground operations take place in a dynamic environment, and its exploration and development areas are dominated by self-propelled mobile equipment and blasting activities. At desired development rates, Kensington typically advances its faces E:\FR\FM\03FEN1.SGM 03FEN1 asabaliauskas on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 9236 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 22 / Friday, February 3, 2017 / Notices in development drifts twice per day, with each advance being a 12-foot length. If the ERCP will have to be relocated from time to time to remain in the vicinity of the development face, as contemplated in PFM #1, the ERCP would have to be relocated on a recurring basis. (10) Repeated movement of the ERCP puts miners at risk for several reasons. An ERCP cannot simply be parked on the decline because of its size—it would block access between the development drift face and the escapeways. To allow for the decline to remain clear, a cutout into the rib must be made to park the ERCP, making the relocation more complex. (11) Damage to the ERCP will put miners at risk as the refuge may not function as intended. Each time the ERCP is relocated, there is a potential that the ERCP will be damaged in some manner. Similarly, if a compressed air line and waterline need to be run and connected to each new location for the ERCP, there is a chance that the lines or the connections will be damaged. Potential damage to the ERCP and the external airline and waterlines increases each time they are moved, disconnected, rerouted, reconnected, and tested. The risk of damaging the lines and connectors is eliminated by relying on the ERCP’s self-contained capabilities. The ERCP can only provide a safety benefit to miners while the device is operational. To the extent an ERCP is unavailable while being relocated, that window of non-availability will increase while the air and water lines are being run, connected and tested for the new location. As such, complying with § 57.11052(d) with respect to the relocating of the ERCP will have a detrimental effect on miner safety. (12) There are significant costs associated with each movement of an ERCP. The ERCP is roughly 15-feet long, and requires a cutout that is 30-feet deep. The development costs at Kensington are approximately $1,500 per foot, meaning that each 30-foot cutout will cost $45,000 to create. Installing air, water and shotcrete will add to the figure. Moving the unit will take 2 miners approximately 12 hours, at a labor cost of $1,136. In total, the average cost to relocate a portable refuge one time is almost $50,000. To the extent these costs can be controlled by alleviating redundant or unnecessary requirements, Coeur’s submits this petition. The petitioner asserts that the alternative method will at all times VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:26 Feb 02, 2017 Jkt 241001 provide the same measure of protection as the existing standard. Sheila McConnell, Director, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances. [FR Doc. 2017–02297 Filed 2–2–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4520–43–P LEGAL SERVICES CORPORATION Request for Letters of Intent To Apply for 2017 Technology Initiative Grant Funding Legal Services Corporation. Notice. AGENCY: ACTION: The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) issues this Notice describing the process for submission of Letters of Intent to Apply for 2017 funding from the LSC Technology Initiative Grant program. This notice and application information are posted at http://tinyurl.com/TIGProcess2017. DATES: Deadline: Letters of Intent must be completed and submitted into the online system at http://lscgrants.lsc.gov no later than 11:59 p.m. EDT, Friday, March 13, 2017. The online system may experience technical difficulties due to heavy traffic on the day of the deadline. Applicants are strongly encouraged to complete LOI submissions as early as possible. LSC will not accept applications submitted after the application deadline unless an extension of the deadline has been approved in advance (see Waiver Authority). Therefore, allow sufficient time for online submission. LSC will provide confirmation via email upon receipt of the completed electronic submission of each Letter of Intent. Keep this email as verification that the program’s LOI was submitted and received. If no confirmation email is received, inquire about the status of your LOI at Techgrants@lsc.gov. ADDRESSES: Letters of Intent must be submitted electronically at http:// lscgrants.lsc.gov. SUMMARY: For information on the status of a current TIG project, contact Eric Mathison, Program Analyst, 202–295–1535; emathison@lsc.gov. For questions about projects in CT, IL, IN, ME, MA, MI, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI, WI, WV, VT, contact David Bonebrake, Program Counsel, 202–295– 1547; dbonebrake@lsc.gov. For questions about projects in AK, AZ, CA, CO, GU, HI, ID, IA, KS, MP, MN, MT, NE, NV, NH, NM, ND, OK, OR, SD, TX, UT, WA, WY, contact Glenn FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: PO 00000 Frm 00046 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Rawdon, Senior Program Counsel, 202.295.1552; grawdon@lsc.gov. For questions about projects in AL, AR, DC, FL, GA, KY, LA, MD, MS, MO, NC, PR, SC, TN, VI, VA, contact Jane Ribadeneyra, Program Analyst, 202.295.1554, ribadeneyraj@lsc.gov. If you have a general question, please email techgrants@lsc.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Summary The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) issues this Notice describing the criteria governing submission and processing of Letters of Intent to Apply for Technology Initiative Grants (TIG). Since LSC’s TIG program was established in 2000, LSC has made over 670 grants totaling more than $57 million. This grant program funds technology tools that help achieve LSC’s goal of increasing the quantity and quality of legal services available to eligible persons. Projects funded under the TIG program develop, test, and replicate innovative technologies that can enable grant recipients and state justice communities to improve lowincome persons’ access to high-quality legal assistance through an integrated and well managed technology system. II. General Information The Legal Services Corporation awards Technology Initiative Grant funds through an open, competitive, and impartial selection process. All prospective applicants for 2017 TIG funds must submit a Letter of Intent to Apply (LOI) prior to submitting a formal application. The format and contents of the LOI should conform to the requirements specified below in Section IV. Through the LOI process, LSC selects those projects that have a reasonable chance of success in the competitive grant process based on LSC’s analysis of the project description and other information provided in the LOI. LSC will solicit full proposals for the selected projects. LSC Requirements Technology Initiative Grant funds are subject to all LSC requirements, including the requirements of the Legal Services Corporation Act (LSC Act), any applicable appropriations acts and any other applicable laws, rules, regulations, policies, guidelines, instructions, and other directives of the Legal Services Corporation (LSC), including, but not limited to, the LSC Audit Guide for Recipients and Auditors, the Accounting Guide for LSC Recipients, the CSR Handbook, the 1981 LSC Property Manual (as amended) and the E:\FR\FM\03FEN1.SGM 03FEN1

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[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 22 (Friday, February 3, 2017)]
[Notices]
[Pages 9234-9236]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-02297]


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

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 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.

DATES: All comments on the petitions must be received by MSHA's Office 
of Standards, Regulations, and Variances on or before March 6, 2017.

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 or Hand Delivery: MSHA, Office of Standards, 
Regulations, and Variances, 201 12th Street South, Suite 4E401, 
Arlington, Virginia 22202-5452, Attention: Sheila McConnell, Director, 
Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances. Persons delivering 
documents are required to check in at the receptionist's desk in Suite 
4E401. 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: 

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 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-2016-009-M.
    Petitioner: Coeur Alaska, Inc., 1700 Lincoln Street, Suite 4700, 
Denver, Colorado 80203.
    Mine: Kensington Mine, MSHA I.D. No. 50-01544, located in Juneau 
County, Alaska.
    Regulation Affected: 30 CFR 57.11052(d) (refuge areas).
    Modification Request: The petitioner requests a modification of the 
existing

[[Page 9235]]

standard for refuge areas applied to the development and exploration 
areas at its Kensington mine. The petitioner seeks approval to use the 
recently installed Strata-manufactured, 12-person emergency refuge 
chambers--portable (ERCP), which are equipped with internal air and 
water supplies, without having to provide compressed air and 
waterlines. The petitioner states that:
    (1) On July 12, 2016, Coeur submitted a petition for modification 
(PFM #1) seeking relief from Sec.  57.11050. PFM #1 seeks relief from 
MSHA's requirement that Coeur provides a refuge chamber within 1,000 
feet of the development face in the mine. During Coeur's discussions 
with MSHA as part of the review of PFM #1 and Coeur's compliance with 
Sec.  57.11050, Coeur learned that a second petition for modification 
(PFM #2) was necessary to seek relief from Sec.  57.11052(d). The 
petitioner requests that MSHA consider PFM #2 in conjunction with 
information submitted previously for PFM #1 because the factual basis 
for both petitions and means of compliance for both standards are 
intertwined. These means of compliance will provide the same or greater 
measure of safety as the existing regulations.
    (2) The petitioner owns and operates the Kensington mine, an 
underground gold mine located in Juneau County, Alaska. Kensington 
utilizes both transverse and longitudinal long-hole stoping. In both 
methods, a single development drift is driven through waste rock 
adjacent to the ore body. When this drift reaches planned elevations, 
level accesses are developed to provide entry points to the ore body 
for exploration and later ore production. Once the level development 
and exploration are completed at a planned elevation, the ore is 
extracted either perpendicular (transverse stoping) or parallel to the 
strike of the ore (longitudinal stoping).
    (3) With PFM #1, Coeur sought relief from MSHA's interpretation of 
30 CFR 57.11050 that would require that a refuge chamber be located 
within 1,000 feet of the development face. Part of the basis for PFM #1 
is that the petitioner's miners at the development face can walk to the 
existing refuge chamber within 30 minutes as required by the standard 
and the existing location of the permanent refuge chamber complies with 
Sec.  57.11050. Also, the petitioner has voluntarily elected to provide 
an ERCP in the vicinity of the development face, and to reposition that 
ERCP from time to time as development advances.
    (4) Because ERCP is equipped with a minimum of a 72-hour internal 
air supply for up to 12 miners, and more than 20 gallons of potable 
water, the petitioner seeks relief from the requirement in Sec.  
57.11052(d) to connect compressed air and waterlines to the ECRP each 
time it is repositioned.
    (5) The ERCP as constructed by the manufacturer complies with Sec.  
57.11052 because the ERCP has internal air and water sources. 
Kensington has been in operation since 1987. The petitioner has 
operated the mine since 1995, and between 1995 and 2009, activities 
were exclusively exploration and development. Coeur did not begin 
production until 2010, with limited production areas. The portions of 
the Kensington mine that are relevant to PFM #2 are still in the 
exploration and development phases--no production is occurring in these 
areas. During the fourth quarter of 2016, Kensington typically had nine 
stopes associated with production, and approximately three main 
development drifts in which exploration and development are taking 
place. The precise number of stopes and drifts may vary slightly from 
one month to the next.
    Currently, 100 percent of Kensington's operations below the 480 
level are either development or exploration. At present, the ERCP is 
positioned within 1,000 feet from the development face, and the current 
location of Kensington's permanent refuge station adjacent to the 585 
Downramp complies with the requirements of Sec. Sec.  57.11050 and 
57.11052(d) because the miners working in the development area can 
reach it within 30 minutes, and compressed airlines and waterlines are 
installed at that station.
    (6) The ERCP is located directly below the 330 level access, and 
has air and waterlines connected to it. However, the ERCP will not 
remain in this location permanently. The petitioner will relocate the 
ERCP in the future as development activities advance. The ERCP is more 
than a reinforced metal compartment to physically shield miners 
following an underground emergency--it is a self-contained chamber with 
own sources for electrical power, breathable air, water, food, and a 
lavatory. Even without being connected to mine services, the ERCP can 
provide electrical power and breathable air to occupants for a minimum 
of 72 hours if the atmosphere outside the ERCP is contaminated. The 
ERCP is equipped with enough potable water to last three days with up 
to 12 occupants.
    (7) Section 57.11052(d) requires that every refuge area be provided 
with compressed air lines, waterlines, suitable hand tools, and 
stopping materials. Based on our research, there is no regulatory or 
judicial history that explains the purpose behind a requirement for 
compressed air lines and waterlines. Accordingly, petitioner assumes 
that these lines are intended to serve the purpose a reasonably prudent 
person, familiar with the mining industry, would expect--to provide a 
source of breathable air and potable water to miners inside a refuge 
area.
    As a matter of simple logic, an operator complies with Sec.  
57.11052(d) by prepositioning hand tools and stoping materials inside 
the refuge area for future use. Similarly, if air and water could be 
prepositioned in a refuge area for future use, the operator would be 
complying with the standard. Historically, it was difficult to ensure 
that sufficient breathable air and potable water would be available in 
a refuge area. Today, the technology behind the ERCP enables the 
petitioner to provide a sustainable environment for its miners and a 
viable time window for mine rescue teams to reach the ERCP following an 
emergency, thereby rendering the requirement for external air 
waterlines obsolete--particularly when the ERCP is a supplemental 
device in addition to Kensington's existing permanent refuge stations.
    (8) Section 57.11052(d) does not specify a minimum quantity, volume 
or pressure for air lines and water lines, and the regulation makes no 
mention of independent power sources or lengths of time the air and 
waterlines need to be available at the refuge area. The standard simply 
requires they be provided. The ERCP provides breathable air and potable 
water. Kensington already complies with the standards requirement. This 
capability to provide known quantities of air and water internally is a 
benefit to the ERCP occupants because there is no risk of interrupted 
air and water access from external damage to the lines, and the known 
quantities allow mine rescue teams to make informed decisions regarding 
the length of time that an ERCP can provide a sustainable environment 
for its occupants.
    (9) Installing air lines and water lines each time the ERCP is 
relocated to remain in proximity to the development face would result 
in a diminution of safety; however, requested relief provides an 
equivalent degree of safety to Sec.  57.11051(d).
    Kensington's underground operations take place in a dynamic 
environment, and its exploration and development areas are dominated by 
self-propelled mobile equipment and blasting activities. At desired 
development rates, Kensington typically advances its faces

[[Page 9236]]

in development drifts twice per day, with each advance being a 12-foot 
length. If the ERCP will have to be relocated from time to time to 
remain in the vicinity of the development face, as contemplated in PFM 
#1, the ERCP would have to be relocated on a recurring basis.
    (10) Repeated movement of the ERCP puts miners at risk for several 
reasons. An ERCP cannot simply be parked on the decline because of its 
size--it would block access between the development drift face and the 
escapeways. To allow for the decline to remain clear, a cutout into the 
rib must be made to park the ERCP, making the relocation more complex.
    (11) Damage to the ERCP will put miners at risk as the refuge may 
not function as intended. Each time the ERCP is relocated, there is a 
potential that the ERCP will be damaged in some manner. Similarly, if a 
compressed air line and waterline need to be run and connected to each 
new location for the ERCP, there is a chance that the lines or the 
connections will be damaged. Potential damage to the ERCP and the 
external airline and waterlines increases each time they are moved, 
disconnected, rerouted, reconnected, and tested. The risk of damaging 
the lines and connectors is eliminated by relying on the ERCP's self-
contained capabilities.
    The ERCP can only provide a safety benefit to miners while the 
device is operational. To the extent an ERCP is unavailable while being 
relocated, that window of non-availability will increase while the air 
and water lines are being run, connected and tested for the new 
location. As such, complying with Sec.  57.11052(d) with respect to the 
relocating of the ERCP will have a detrimental effect on miner safety.
    (12) There are significant costs associated with each movement of 
an ERCP. The ERCP is roughly 15-feet long, and requires a cutout that 
is 30-feet deep. The development costs at Kensington are approximately 
$1,500 per foot, meaning that each 30-foot cutout will cost $45,000 to 
create. Installing air, water and shotcrete will add to the figure. 
Moving the unit will take 2 miners approximately 12 hours, at a labor 
cost of $1,136. In total, the average cost to relocate a portable 
refuge one time is almost $50,000. To the extent these costs can be 
controlled by alleviating redundant or unnecessary requirements, 
Coeur's submits this petition.
    The petitioner asserts that the alternative method will at all 
times provide the same measure of protection as the existing standard.

Sheila McConnell,
Director, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances.
[FR Doc. 2017-02297 Filed 2-2-17; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4520-43-P