OHS Code Explanation Guide

Published Date: July 01, 2009
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Part 36 Mining

Section 646 Electrical storm

The mine blaster must be aware of the presence of nearby electrical storms that could pose a risk to blasting operations. Although extraneous electrical current is considered a major risk to electrical blasting systems, recorded incidents provide sufficient evidence that non-electric blasting systems could also be at risk from direct lightning strike.

Although not specified in the OHS Code, it is highly recommended that the employer provide the mine blaster with lightning detection devices that will assist in related blast site decision making.

In locations where it may be necessary to halt blasting activities it is recommended that company procedures be clearly defined to assist the blaster in the decision making process. Explosive manufacturers should be consulted when these procedures are being prepared.

Sections 646(b) and 646(c) are considered to apply to all mine workers who may be at risk of injury from a premature initiation of a loaded blast hole or blast pattern.