Mining Publication: Self-Contained Self-Rescuer Field Evaluation: First-Year Results of 5-Year Study
A joint effort by the Bureau of Mines and the Mine Safety and Health Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, was undertaken to determine how well self-contained self-rescuers (SCSR's), deployed in accordance with Federal Regulations (30 CFR 75.1714), held up in the underground environment. This report presents findings regarding laboratory-tested breathing apparatus from the first year of a 5-yr program as well as other related findings. The SCSR's were tested on human subjects and on a breathing and metabolic simulator. These results indicate that the apparatus, if well-treated, perform as expected except for manufacturing defects or quality control problems, which are identified. However,when the apparatus are carried in and out of the mine every day and stored at the working section, they may suffer abuse that can be extreme. Physical signs of abuse, unless extremely obvious, frequently are not detected by the miners or the mine operators; this poses a danger to a potential user in case of emergency. Recommendations include improved training in inspection procedures.