Filtered recirculation: a critical component to maintaining acceptable air quality in enclosed cabs for surface mining equipment.
Mine ventilation: Proceedings of the 10th U.S./North American Mine Ventilation Symposium, Anchorage, Alaska, May 16-19, 2004. Leiden, Netherlands: Balkema, 2004 May; :377-387
Most types of heavy equipment used in surface mining to remove and transport overburden and ore place the equipment operator in an enclosed cab. A review of the Mine Safety and Health Administration's dust records shows that a substantial number of equipment operators exceed the allowable limit for silica and respirable dust while operating this equipment. Often the equipment is older, and various components on the enclosed cab and the filtration system have deteriorated to ineffective levels. Another contributing factor identified during a recent field study by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health is the significant amount of dust that may be generated inside the enclosed cab by the actions of the equipment operator. When this occurs, the only method to effectively remove the dust is with a recirculation filtration system. Toward this goal, a new self-contained recirculation unit was tested on three different pieces of mining equipment at two operations. Results of these tests, along with the critical factors for implementing an effective recirculation system for enclosed cabs, are discussed.
Ventilation; Mining-equipment; Surface-mining; Air-quality; Equipment-operators; Workers; Respirable-dust; Silica-dusts; Silicosis; Carcinogens; Coal-mining
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Mine ventilation: Proceedings of the 10th U.S./North American Mine Ventilation Symposium