THE METALLIFEROUS MINES REGULATIONS-1961
The Metalliferous Mines Regulations came into force from 11th March-1961, replacing both the Metalliferous Mines Regulations-1926 and the Mysore Gold Mines Regulations-1953. The previous regulations were sketchy in nature and contained only vague provisions since they had been framed when the metalliferous mining industry was still in its infancy. They were considered inadequate to meet the requirements of a fast developing mineral industry.
The provisions in the new regulations are similar in nature to those in the Coal Mines Regulations – 1957, with necessary modifications to suit the working conditions prevalent in the metalliferous mines.
In general, the regulations deal with matters of a technical nature providing for precautions to be taken for the prevention of possible dangers. The salient features of the provisions of the MMR-1961 are as outlined below-
Regulation 9: Notice of Accident –
(1)(a)When their occurs in or about a mine (i) an accident causing loss of life or serious bodily injury in connection with mining operations; (ii) an explosion or ignition; (iii) a spontaneous heating or outbreak of fire, or appearance of smoke or other indications of heating or outbreak of fire; (iv) an influx of noxious gases; (v) an occurrence of inflammable gas in mine to which Regulation 142 does not apply; (vi) an irruption of water; (vii) a rock-burst in workings belowground; (viii) a premature collapse of any part of the workings; (ix) an accident due to explosives; (x) a breakage or fracture of rope, chain, headgear, pulley or axle or bearing thereof, or other gear by which persons are lowered or raised; (xi) an overwinding of cages or other means of conveyance while men are being lowered or raised; (xii) a breakage or fracture of an essential part of winding engine, crankshaft, coupling, bearing, gearing, clutch, drum or drum shaft, or failure of emergency brake; (xiii) a bursting of any equipment containing steam, compressed air or other substance at high pressure; or (xiv) a breakage, fracture or failure of any essential part of any machine or apparatus whereby the safety of persons may be endangered: the owner, agent or manager shall forthwith inform the Regional Inspector about the occurrence by telephone or express telegram or by special messenger, and shall also, within 24 hours of every such occurrence, give notice thereof in Form IV-A of First Schedule to the District Magistrate, the Chief Inspector and the Regional Inspector; and shall simultaneously exhibit a copy of the notice on a special notice board outside the office of the mine and shall ensure that the notice is kept on the board in a legible condition for not less than 14 days from the date of such exhibit.
(b) When an accident causing loss of life or serious bodily injury occurs in or about a mine in connection with the generation, storage, transformation, transmission, supply or use of electrical energy, the owner, agent or manager shall also forthwith inform the Electrical Inspector of Mines by telephone, express telegram or special messenger.
(2) If death results from any injury reported as serious [under sub-regulation (1) or if an injury other than the serious injury becomes serious], the owner, agent or manager shall with 24 hours of his being informed of the same, give notice thereof to the District Magistrate, the Chief Inspector and the Regional Inspector.
(3) In respect of every person killed or injured as above, the owner, agent or manager shall, send to the Chief Inspector particulars in Form IV-B and IV-C of First Schedule, within seven days of the occurrence or 15 days of the injured person returning to duty, as the case may be.
Regulation 10: Notice of disease – When any person employed in a mine contacts any disease notified by the Central Government in the Official Gazette, the owner, agent or manager shall within three days of his being informed of the disease, send notice thereof in form V of First Schedule to the District Magistrate, the Chief Inspector, the Regional Inspector and the Inspector of Mines (Medical).
Regulations 60, 61, 63, & 64 – Outline the general requirements about mine plans and sections; types of plans and sections to be maintained at the mines, which include the surface plan, underground plans, transverse and vertical sections, ventilation plan, water danger plan, geological plan, etc.; copies of the plans and sections to be submitted to the Chief Inspector; and plans and sections to be submitted after abandonment or discontinuance respectively.
Regulations 106 to 118- These regulations define the various parameters of the methods of working in opencast and underground mines under various geo-mining conditions and take into account the safety of the mine workings and hence the persons therein.
Regulations 119 to 130 – Outline the precautions against dangers form fire, dust gas and water including the dangers from surface water and underground inundation.
Regulation 146 and 148 – Outline the standards of lighting in the mines.
Regulations 153 to 170 – Outline the use of explosive in shot-firing in the mines.