OHS Code Explanation Guide

Published Date: July 01, 2009
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Part 36 Mining

Section 711 Ventilation system

Subsection 711(1)

The professional engineer’s design must ensure that air velocities are sufficient to create required turbulence without raising dust or stratifying the ventilation current. Locations of fans must prevent recirculation of contaminated air and stoppings must be provided to prevent leakage and short circuiting. Figure 36.21 illustrates a mine air distribution system.

Although the OHS Code sets specific standards for air content and quality, other considerations such as comfort level, drops in pressure and sudden emissions of methane may require higher standards.

Figure 36.21 Schematic mine air distribution system

Subsection 711(2)

Safe operating procedures are required to ensure ventilation problems are thoroughly and uniformly addressed. The safe operating procedures can also serve as a quick reference and training tool. The procedure must be certified by a professional engineer. Section 8 of the OHS Regulation requires that the procedures be in writing and available to workers.

Subsection 711(3)

Unless an acceptance is provided by the Director, the use of compressed air for ventilation is prohibited. Its quality is largely unknown and once the air hits the ventilation system, it becomes breathing air for workers. It must therefore meet specific quality standards. It is also quite probable that ventilation using compressed air will not meet desired velocity and turbulence objectives, especially at working faces.