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Mining Project: Applicability of Proximity Detection to Mobile Underground Coal Equipment

NOTE: This page is archived for historical purposes and is no longer being maintained or updated.
Principal Investigator
  • Jacob Carr, NIOSH OMSHR, 412-386-6877
Start Date10/1/2014
End Date9/30/2015
Objective

To determine whether the proximity detection systems currently available to the underground coal mining industry provide protection to miners working near mobile haulage equipment such as shuttle cars and scoops.

Topic Area

Research Summary

This pilot project had one research aim: to determine whether the proximity detection systems currently available for use on mobile underground coal mining equipment provide protection against striking and pinning hazards.

Proximity detection systems are being used to improve safety of miners working near underground mobile equipment. However, little or no research has been conducted to quantify the performance of these systems and to determine whether they provide protection specifically against striking and pinning hazards. Extensive research has been conducted on proximity detection in relation to continuous mining machines, and the systems on the market for mobile equipment were developed based on this research. These systems are now being adapted to other mobile equipment such as shuttle cars and scoops.

This project determined the performance of these systems in terms of detection range, accuracy, repeatability, and reproducibility. The research aimed to provide findings that could be used to reduce traumatic injuries and fatalities in the mining workplace.

This project produced an assessment of proximity detection systems in use on mobile underground coal haulage equipment, and could be used by stakeholders to improve system design and implementation. Also, the research findings are being utilized in current NIOSH research.


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