Mining Publication: U.S. Bureau of Mines/NIOSH Mining Electrical Safety Research: A Legacy of Protection Against Shock, Fires, and Explosions
This paper reviews the 100-year history of federal electrical safety research in the U.S mining industry, originally by the US Bureau of Mines, and as carried on today by NIOSH. First, there is a brief historical review of the use of electrical power in mining and an examination of the associated shock, fire, and explosion hazards. These hazards were the impetus for government intervention to improve the safety of U.S mineworkers. The evolution of electrical power systems and equipment in mining then serves as a backdrop for a review of continued electrical safety research. The paper concludes with a recap of the contributions made to mine worker electrical safety by federal research efforts, and thoughts on where the future will lead such research under NIOSH.