MSHA issues bulletin on device to prevent roof operator injuries

April 8, 2010

The Mine Safety and Health Administration on March 29 issued a program information bulletin explaining the procedures for using "outby deflector pads."

Outby deflector pads are auxiliary machine-mounted safety devices that work with a roof bolting machine's automated temporary roof support system to prevent accidents caused by pieces of roof rock falling between the beam and roof bolter operator's canopy. According to the bulletin, roof bolter operators historically have experienced a large percentage of roof fall injuries, most of which occurred under roofs temporarily supported by the bolting machine's ATRS system.

The bulletin covers the benefits and limitations of using the pads.