OHS Code Explanation Guide

Published Date: July 01, 2009
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Part 36 Mining

Section 707 Support system

Subsection 707(1)

In designing entrances and roadways, the professional engineer must address the physical characteristics of the strata and structures, as well as stresses created by the mining sequence. Accurate evaluation of these factors must be contained in a geotechnical analysis.

Subsection 707(2)

Information collected from the geotechnical analysis is also used to determine appropriate support for the roof and sides of excavations. Safety factors addressed by the design of these support systems contribute to the stability and safety of the overall mining operation. All support systems and pillars must therefore be designed by a professional engineer.

Subsection 707(3)

To ensure a detailed geotechnical analysis is completed, this subsection specifies some of the factors that must be considered by the geotechnical engineer. Despite the requirements, other relevant factors can be included based on the engineer’s professional judgment. These include the type and position of the seam and the rock layers above and below the seam, their strength, discontinuities, groundwater, geological structure, near-surface deposits, interaction of workings in more than one seam, mining sequence through time, stresses and strains, subsidence, the mine excavations and outbursts of rock, water or gas.

Subsection 707(4)

While geotechnical analysis and evaluation determine the minimum support required to provide relative stability and safety, additional support can improve workers’ comfort level. Additional supports can be added at the worker’s discretion to ensure safety.