OHS Code Explanation Guide

Published Date: July 01, 2009
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Part 36 Mining

Section 720 Reverse flows

Subsection 720(1)

Repealed.

Subsection 720(2)

A coal mine ventilation system needs to be designed to meet the requirements of Part 2. If the design includes the ability in an emergency to reverse the main ventilation fan and thus reverse the main ventilation flow, then this section provides for its safe application.

Air flow reversal is normally only required in the event of a fire or explosion. Smoke and fumes need to be directed away from areas not yet evacuated, preventing contamination of areas under evacuation.

Air flow reversal must only be implemented with the underground coal mine manager’s authorization. Air flow reversal can greatly affect worker health and safety so the decision is not made lightly.