New hazards in mines

The 27th International Scientific and Technical Conference – Natural Mining Hazards has started. In addition to the well known hazards, a completely new – epidemiological hazard has appeared. And it is Covid-19 that is the topic of the first day of the meeting organized in a virtual format.

photo: Dawid Lach

During the two-day conference, 39 papers will be presented, prepared by 83 authors from, among others, United Kingdom and Spain. The 27th edition is hosted by Jastrzębska Spółka Węglowa. The event has been organized jointly with the Central Mining Institute, JSW Szkolenie i Górnictwo, Association of Engineers and Mining Technicians, and the Katowice Branch of the PAN Mining Commission.

– This is a very important event because for many years, in the area of safety of mining crews and mine operations, the International Scientific and Technical Conference has been setting trends and outlining the main areas for discussion based on which relevant regulations have been drafted and adopted, explains Artur Dyczko, Vice-President of the JSW Management Board for Technical and Operational Matters.

The International Scientific and Technical Conference is attended by mine workers, scientists, experts and representatives of Mining Authorities, Coal Companies and companies associated with mining and occupational safety in the mining industry. The first day of the meeting was devoted to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the activity of Polish mines.

– The papers present the mines’ actions aimed at combating the coronavirus, ensuring safe working conditions and preventing the spread of Covid-19 in mines. Participants of all mining companies share their experience, present their achievements and proposals of procedures to ensure continuity of production in the future, said professor Stanisław Prusek, Director of the Central Mining Institute.

It is noteworthy that the history of the International Scientific and Technical Conference goes back to 1994. This year, due to the current pandemic, for the first time the conference was organized online.

– I remember March this year, when were just entering the Covid period. We went through difficult times when a lot of miners fell ill, but somehow we managed to fight it, thanks to, among others, coordinated efforts of all companies. The role of the mining authority is to shape occupational safety policies that make mining safe in any organizational system or mining regime. This is our great ambition and challenge, says Adam Mirek, Ph.D. Eng., President of the State Mining Authority, which assumed the patronage of the Conference.

The second day of the conference will cover subjects associated with, among others, seismic and tock burst hazards, and aerological and radiological hazards. Please watch the event online. Participation is free of charge.