Klobuchar, Franken, Peterson, Walz, Nolan Announce New Funding for Miner Safety and Health Training in Minnesota

May 13, 2016


WASHINGTON, DC –Today, Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken, along with Representatives Collin Peterson, Tim Walz, and Rick Nolan, announced new funding for miner safety and health training in Minnesota. The U.S. Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) has awarded $289,468 in MSHA State Grants for the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Program. The three regional technical and community sites - Hibbing Community College, Northland Community and Technical College, and South Central College - conduct mine health and safety training and other activities for the miners, mine operators, and employees working at mining operations throughout Minnesota.   

“The strength of our mining industry starts with a strong commitment to the safety and health of our hardworking miners,” said Klobuchar. “This new investment will help ensure that Minnesota miners have the training they need to stay safe while on the job.”

“Just recently, we honored hard-working men and women who have been injured or died on the job with Workers Memorial Day,” said Franken. “It reminds us how essential it is that our miners and workers have the safest work environment possible—this grant will help provide training and resources to help keep our workers safe and healthy on the job.”

“Providing Minnesota miners with the tools they need to remain safe and healthy on the job is necessary to a strong workforce,” Peterson said. “This funding will also ensure the continued success of the Minnesota mining industry.”

“America’s mining and steel production and our nation’s industrial base are the foundation of our national economy and security,” Nolan said. “Supporting the health and safety of the hardworking men and women in our mining industry is imperative to ensuring the success of Minnesota families and communities.”

The program also makes available to all mines and miners in Minnesota, specific information on the hazards of overexposure to silica dust though three regional health seminars. To assist small mining operations with the development of specific and effective on-the-job task training to better prepare miners, mine managers, and supervisors for the mining season, the program sponsors Collaborative Mine Safety and Health seminars on an annual basis. These seminars provide information on pre-start-up safety and health issues related to the industry, with a special emphasis on the prevention of powered haulage accidents.