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Coal Mining Occupational Health and Safety Regulations (SOR/90-97)

Regulations are current to 2022-07-25 and last amended on 2021-01-01. Previous Versions

PART IExplosives and Detonators (continued)

Storage and Handling (continued)

  •  (1) A qualified person shall have control of the storage, issue and receipt of all explosives and detonators.

  • (2) The qualified person referred to in subsection (1) shall

    • (a) test each detonator for electrical continuity before issuing it;

    • (b) issue detonators to no person other than a shotfirer; and

    • (c) receive and store unused explosives and detonators returned from underground.

Care of Blasting Machines

  •  (1) A qualified person shall, at least once every three months, clean and thoroughly overhaul all blasting machines that are in service.

  • (2) A record of the work performed pursuant to subsection (1) shall be made by the qualified person who performed the work.

Shotfirers

  •  (1) No person other than a shotfirer shall fire a shot.

  • (2) No shotfirer shall fire a shot unless the shotfirer has been authorized to fire that type of shot.

 The handling of explosives and detonators in the preparation underground of a shot or shot hole shall be under the direct supervision and control of a shotfirer.

Shotfiring Procedures

 Where shotfiring is to be done underground during a shift, the shotfirer shall verify that no more explosives or detonators than are required for the shotfiring are kept in the danger area referred to in paragraph 22(1)(a) in which the shotfiring is to be done.

  •  (1) A shotfirer shall use

    • (a) only one class, grade or quality of explosive in a shot;

    • (b) an explosive that is in its original wrapping;

    • (c) no more explosive in any shot hole than the amount that is necessary for the work to be performed or the maximum amount of that type of explosive that is set out in column II of Part I of Schedule II, whichever is the lesser;

    • (d) tamping rods and stemmers that are constructed of non-metallic materials; and

    • (e) a cleaner and crack detector that is capable of cleaning the full length of the shot hole and detecting transverse and longitudinal cracks of 3 mm or more in the shot hole.

  • (2) No shot shall be fired

    • (a) in broken coal or in a support pillar; or

    • (b) in an area where the concentration of flammable gas in the air exceeds 1.25 per cent.

  • (3) Every coal-cutting machine shall be stopped before shots are fired at the return brushing face in a longwall section.

Preparations Before Charging a Shot Hole

 Before initiating the preparations for charging a shot hole referred to in section 21, a shotfirer shall verify that all broken coal is removed from the area of the shot hole and shall allow sufficient time for dust in the air to settle.

 A shotfirer shall, immediately before charging a shot hole underground,

  • (a) subject to subsection 27(3), verify, using a methanometer and a locked-flame safety lamp, that the concentration of flammable gas in the general body of the air in the area of the shot hole and in any area contiguous thereto does not exceed 1.25 per cent;

  • (b) examine the shot hole to verify that it has been thoroughly cleaned;

  • (c) verify that the shot hole does not intersect any cracks or crevices greater than 3 mm;

  • (d) verify that the shot hole is at least 3 mm larger than the diameter of the cartridge of the explosive to be used;

  • (e) place a plug of stemming in the back of the shot hole; and

  • (f) verify that any dust in the area of the shot hole has been treated with stone dust to a minimum of three 25 kg bags of stone dust per metre of advance.

Precautions Before Firing a Shot

  •  (1) Before firing a shot, a shotfirer shall

    • (a) determine a danger area that extends at least 30 m from the shot hole;

    • (b) evacuate all persons from the danger area; and

    • (c) post sentries at the limits of the danger area.

  • (2) The sentries referred to in paragraph (1)(c) shall prevent any person, other than the shotfirer, from entering the danger area until the shotfirer verifies that the area is safe to enter.

  • (3) No person, other than a shotfirer, shall enter the danger area referred to in subsection (1) until the person has been informed by the shotfirer or a sentry that it is safe to do so.

 Immediately before firing a shot, a shotfirer shall repeat the test referred to in paragraph 21(a).

 Where a shot or round of shots is fired, the shotfirer shall make an examination of the effect of the shot or round of shots before the next shot or round of shots is fired.

Firing with a Blasting Machine

  •  (1) Where a shot is to be fired with a blasting machine, the shotfiring cable shall be not less than 30 m long.

  • (2) No person, other than a shotfirer, shall connect a shotfiring cable to detonator wires or to a blasting machine.

  • (3) Where a shot is to be fired with a blasting machine, the shotfirer shall, in the following sequence,

    • (a) twist the ends of the shotfiring cable together at the blasting machine and isolate them from ground;

    • (b) check the shotfiring cable and the detonator circuit;

    • (c) connect the shotfiring cable to the shot;

    • (d) check the total circuit;

    • (e) verify that all persons in the danger area referred to in paragraph 22(1)(a) have been evacuated from that area;

    • (f) connect the shotfiring cable to the blasting machine, verifying that the shotfirer alone has possession and control of the blasting machine;

    • (g) shout “FIRE” or “TIR”;

    • (h) verify that the danger area referred to in paragraph 22(1)(a) is clear of persons;

    • (i) take cover outside the danger area referred to in paragraph 22(1)(a);

    • (j) fire the shot;

    • (k) subject to sections 28 and 29, wait at least five minutes before the shotfirer returns to the area of the shot hole to satisfy himself that no dangerous condition has resulted from firing the shot; and

    • (l) measure the concentration of flammable gas in the general body of the air in the area of the shot hole.

Single Shots

 Subject to section 27, each shot hole shall be charged separately and each shot shall be fired singly.

Multi-shots

  •  (1) Subject to subsections (2) to (4), rounds of shots may be fired in shafts, development drivages, cross-measure drivages, intake and return brushings of longwall faces and repair brushings.

  • (2) Not more than 12 shots in a round may be fired simultaneously using the shortest millisecond-delay detonators.

  • (3) A round of shots using different millisecond-delay detonators shall not be fired unless

    • (a) the concentration of flammable gas in the general body of the air in the area of the shot holes and in any area contiguous thereto does not exceed

      • (i) where the period between the detonation of the first shot and the detonation of the last shot is calculated not to exceed 0.2 second, 1 per cent, and

      • (ii) where the period between the detonation of the first shot and the detonation of the last shot is calculated to exceed 0.2 second but not to exceed 0.75 second, 0.8 per cent;

    • (b) the mine manager has issued to the shotfirer for each area of firing a copy of the shotfiring pattern that shows

      • (i) the position and direction of every shot hole in the round,

      • (ii) the maximum quantity of explosive to be used in each shot hole, and

      • (iii) the maximum length of each shot hole; and

    • (c) the maximum period that may elapse between the detonation of the first shot and the detonation of the last shot is

      • (i) where the shots are fired in a development drivage that contains no seam of coal exceeding 300 mm and that is more than 5 m from a waste or fault, 0.75 second or less, and

      • (ii) in all other cases, 0.2 second or less.

  • (4) A copy of the shotfiring pattern for each area at which multi-shot firing is carried out in a mine shall be kept available above ground at the coal mine for examination by employees.

Misfired Shots

Single Shots

  •  (1) Where a single shot misfires, the shotfirer shall, in the following sequence,

    • (a) remove the handle or key from the blasting machine and disconnect the blasting machine from the shotfiring cable;

    • (b) twist the ends of the shotfiring cable together at the blasting machine and isolate them from ground;

    • (c) wait 15 minutes;

    • (d) examine the shotfiring cable and connections for any defects and remedy any that are found; and

    • (e) make a further attempt to fire the shot using either the same blasting machine or another blasting machine that is suitable for the purpose.

  • (2) Where the attempt to fire the shot referred to in paragraph (1)(e) fails, the shotfirer shall, in the following sequence,

    • (a) remove the handle or key from the blasting machine and disconnect the blasting machine from the shotfiring cable;

    • (b) twist the ends of the shotfiring cable together at the blasting machine and isolate them from ground;

    • (c) wait 15 minutes;

    • (d) mark the location of the detonator lead wires of the misfired shot;

    • (e) cause a new shot hole to be drilled at a distance of not less than 300 mm from the loaded shot hole and parallel to and equal in depth to that shot hole; and

    • (f) fire a shot in the newly drilled shot hole.

  • (3) A shotfirer shall wait for five minutes after firing the shot referred to in paragraph (2)(f) and then, where practicable, sort the debris by hand, recover all explosives and detonators from the debris and take them to the structure referred to in subsection 11(2).

Rounds of Shots

  •  (1) Where all of a round of shots misfire, the shotfirer shall, in the following sequence,

    • (a) remove the handle or key from the blasting machine and disconnect the shotfiring cable from the blasting machine;

    • (b) twist the ends of the shotfiring cable together at the blasting machine and isolate them from ground;

    • (c) wait 15 minutes;

    • (d) test the circuit for electrical continuity; and

    • (e) if the test shows that there is electrical continuity, attempt to fire the round using either the same blasting machine or another blasting machine that is suitable for the purpose.

  • (2) Where the test referred to in paragraph (1)(e) shows that there is no electrical continuity, or where the attempt referred to in that paragraph fails, the shotfirer shall, in the following sequence,

    • (a) remove the handle or key from the blasting machine and disconnect the shotfiring cable from the blasting machine;

    • (b) twist the ends of the shotfiring cable together at the blasting machine and isolate them from ground;

    • (c) wait 15 minutes;

    • (d) disconnect the shotfiring cable and detonator lead wires at each shot hole;

    • (e) test for electrical continuity in the shotfiring cable and detonator lead wires;

    • (f) test the blasting machine; and

    • (g) if the tests show that there is electrical continuity, the detonator lead wires and the shotfiring cable shall be reconnected and tested for electrical continuity and a further attempt shall be made to fire the round.

  • (3) Where any of the tests referred to in paragraphs (2)(e) to (g) do not produce the desired result, the shotfirer shall install barricades and post a warning sign in accordance with subsection 31(1).

  • (4) Where a single shot in a round misfires and is recovered, or where a part of a round of shots misfires and is recovered, the shotfirer shall sort the debris by hand, recover all explosives and detonators from the debris and take them to the structure referred to in subsection 11(2).

Unrecovered Misfired Shots

  •  (1) Where a single shot in a round misfires and is not recovered, the procedures set out in subsections 29(1) and (2) shall be carried out.

  • (2) Where a part of a round of shots misfires and is not recovered, the procedures set out in subsection 29(2) shall be carried out and groups of shots with the same millisecond-delay shall be fired in turn, in increasing order of delay.

  •  (1) Where a misfired shot is not recovered, the shotfirer shall cause

    • (a) barricades to be installed to prevent persons from entering the danger area for the shot hole determined in accordance with paragraph 22(1)(a); and

    • (b) a warning sign to be conspicuously posted on each barricade referred to in paragraph (a) with the words “MISFIRED SHOT — KEEP OUT” and “COUP DE MINE RATÉ — ENTRÉE INTERDITE”.

  • (2) After having carried out the procedures set out in subsection (1), the shotfirer shall report orally to the underground manager or mine manager the misfired shot and the procedures carried out.

Flamed Shots

  •  (1) Where a shot flames on firing, the shotfirer shall, in the following sequence,

    • (a) immediately take steps to extinguish the flame;

    • (b) verify that the section of the coal mine in which the shot was fired is guarded by an employee and left unworked, except for making the section safe, until inspected by a safety officer;

    • (c) without delay, report the flamed shot orally to the shotfirer’s supervisor or the underground manager; and

    • (d) report the flamed shot in writing to the mine manager.

  • (2) Where a mine manager is informed of a flamed shot in accordance with paragraph (1)(d), the mine manager shall, without undue delay, make a report of the flamed shot to a safety officer at the district office.

Reports and Records

  •  (1) At the end of a shotfirer’s shift, the shotfirer shall report in writing to the shotfirer’s immediate supervisor every misfired shot and flamed shot for which the shotfirer was responsible during the shift.

  • (2) Where an immediate supervisor is informed of a misfired shot or flamed shot in accordance with subsection (1), the supervisor shall, without undue delay, report in writing to the underground manager or mine manager the misfired shot or flamed shot.

  •  (1) At the end of a shotfirer’s shift, the shotfirer shall record in a book that is kept for that purpose all the shots the preparation and firing of which the shotfirer was responsible for during the shift.

  • (2) The record referred to in subsection (1) shall include

    • (a) the number of detonators used;

    • (b) the amount of explosive used, expressed in grams;

    • (c) in respect of each shot or round of shots,

      • (i) the time of firing of the shot or round of shots,

      • (ii) the concentration of flammable gas in the air before and after each shot or round of shots was fired,

      • (iii) the number of detonators used, and

      • (iv) the amount of explosive used, expressed in grams;

    • (d) the number of misfired shots and whether they were recovered; and

    • (e) the number of flamed shots.

 
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