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Submission for OMB Review: Comment Request

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Start Preamble March 4, 2004.

The Department of Labor (DOL) has submitted the following public information collection request (ICR) to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-13, 44 U.S.C. chapter 35). A copy of this ICR, with applicable supporting documentation, may be obtained by contacting the Department of Labor (DOL). To obtain documentation, contact Ira Mills on 202-693-4122 (this is not a toll-free number) or e-mail:

Comments should be sent to Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Attn: OMB Desk Officer for DOL, Office of Management and Budget, Room 10235, Washington, DC 20503, 202-395-7316 (this is not a toll-free number), within 30 days from the date of this publication in the Federal Register.

The OMB is particularly interested in comments which:

  • Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility;
  • Evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;
  • Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and
  • Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses.

Agency: Mine Safety and Health Administration.

Type of Review: Extension of currently approved collection.

Title: Ventilation Plans, Tests, and Examinations in Underground Coal Mines.

OMB Number: 1219-0088.

Frequency: On occasion; Monthly; Weekly; or Daily.

Affected Public: Business or other for-profit.

Number of Respondents: 711.

Number of Annual Responses: 2,144,014.

Estimated Time Per Response: Varies from 3 minutes for countersigning activities to 16 hours to update a ventilation plan.

Total Burden Hours: 2,068,839 hours.

Total Annualized capital/startup costs: $0.

Total Annual Costs (operating/maintaining systems or purchasing services): $190.492.

Description: An underground mine is a maze of tunnels that must be adequately ventilated with fresh air to provide a safe environment for miners. Methane is liberated from the strata, and noxious gases and dusts from blasting and other mining activities may be Start Printed Page 12349present. The explosive and noxious gases and dusts must be diluted, rendered harmless, and carried to the surface by the ventilating currents. Sufficient air must be provided to maintain the level of respirable dust at or below 2 milligrams per cubic meter of air and air quality must be maintained in accordance with MSHA standards. Mechanical ventilation equipment of sufficient capacity must operate at all times while miners are in the mine. Ground conditions are subject to frequent changes, thus sufficient tests and examinations are necessary to ensure the integrity of the ventilation system and to detect any changes that may require adjustments in the system. Records of tests and examinations are necessary to ensure that the ventilation system is being maintained and that changes which could adversely affect the integrity of the system or the safety of the miners are not occurring. These examination requirements of 30 CFR 75.310, 75.312, 75.342, 75.351, 75.360 through 75.364, 75.370, 75.371, and 75.382 also incorporate examinations of other critical aspects of the underground work environment such as roof conditions and electrical equipment which have historically cased numerous fatalities if not properly maintained and operated.

Start Signature

Ira L. Mills,

Departmental Clearance Officer.

End Signature End Preamble

[FR Doc. 04-5861 Filed 3-15-04; 8:45 am]