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Proposed Extension of Existing Information Collection; Main Fan Operation and Inspection in Gassy Underground Metal and Nonmetal Mines

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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Request for public comments.


The Department of Labor, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, conducts a pre-clearance consultation program to provide the general public and Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on proposed and continuing collections of information in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. This program helps to assure that requested data can be provided in the desired format, reporting burden (time and financial resources) is minimized, collection instruments are clearly understood, and the impact of collection requirements on respondents can be properly assessed. Currently, the Mine Safety and Health Administration is soliciting comments concerning the extension of the information collection for 30 CFR 57.22204. OMB last approved this information collection request on January 8, 2010. The package expires on January 31, 2013.


All comments must be postmarked or received by midnight Eastern Time on September 17, 2012.


Comments concerning the information collection requirements of this notice must be clearly identified with “OMB 1219-0030” and sent to the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA). Comments may be sent by any of the methods listed below.

  • Federal E-Rulemaking Portal: Follow the on-line instructions for submitting comments.
  • Facsimile: 202-693-9441, include “OMB 1219-0030” in the subject line of the message.
  • Regular Mail or Hand Delivery: MSHA, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances, 1100 Wilson Boulevard, Room 2350, Arlington, VA 22209-3939. For hand delivery, sign in at the receptionist's desk on the 21st floor.


Greg Moxness, Chief, Economic Analysis Division, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances, MSHA, at (email); 202-693-9440 (voice); or 202-693-9441 (facsimile).


I. Background

Potentially gassy (explosive) conditions in underground metal and nonmetal mines are largely controlled by the main mine fans. When accumulations of explosive gases, such as methane, are not swept from the mine by the main fans, they may reasonably be expected to contact an ignition source. The results of such contacts are usually disastrous, and multiple fatalities may be reasonably expected to occur. The standard contains significantly more stringent requirements for main fans in “gassy” mines than for main fans in other mines. 30 CFR 57.22204, which only applies to metal and nonmetal underground mines that are categorized as “gassy,” requires main fans to have pressure-recording systems. This standard also requires main fans to be inspected daily while operating if persons are underground and certification made of such inspections by signature and date. Certifications and pressure recordings are to be retained for one year and made available to authorized representatives of the Secretary.

This information collection addresses the recordkeeping associated with 30 CFR 57.22204.

II. Desired Focus of Comments

The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is soliciting comments concerning the proposed extension of the information collection related to this safety standard on main fan operation and inspection in gassy underground metal and nonmetal mines. MSHA is particularly interested in comments that:

  • Evaluate whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information has practical utility;
  • Evaluate the accuracy of the MSHA's estimate of the burden of the collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;
  • Suggest methods to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and
  • Address the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology (e.g., permitting electronic submissions of responses) to minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond.

The public may examine publicly available documents, including the public comment version of the supporting statement, at MSHA, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances, 1100 Wilson Boulevard, Room 2350, Arlington, VA 22209-3939. OMB clearance requests are available on MSHA's Web site at under “Rules & Regs” on the right side of the screen by selecting Information Collections Requests, Paperwork Reduction Act Supporting Statements. The document will be available on MSHA's Web site for 60 days after the publication date of this notice. Comments submitted in writing or in electronic form will be made available for public inspection. Because comments will not be edited to remove any identifying or contact information, MSHA cautions the commenter against including any information in the submission that should not be publicly disclosed. Questions about the information collection requirements may be directed to the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION section of this notice.

III. Current Actions

The information obtained from mine operators is used by MSHA during inspections to determine compliance with this safety standard. MSHA has updated the data in respect to the number of respondents and responses, as well as the total burden hours and total annual cost burden supporting this information collection extension request.


Type of Review: Extension.

Agency: Mine Safety and Health Administration.

Title: Main Fan Operation and Inspection in Gassy Underground Metal and Nonmetal Mines.

OMB Number: 1219-0030.

Affected Public: Business or other for-profit.

Cite/Reference/Form/etc: 30 CFR 57.22204.

Total Number of Respondents: 7.

Frequency: Daily.

Total Number of Responses: 6,930.

Total Burden Hours: 2,386 hours.

Other Cost Burden: $2,800.

Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and included in the request for Office of Management and Budget approval of the information collection request; they will also become a matter of public record.

Authority: 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A).

Dated: July 12, 2012.

George F. Triebsch,

Certifying Officer.

[FR Doc. 2012-17341 Filed 7-16-12; 8:45 am]