Mining Industry Safety Leadership Group meeting minutes - 24 May 2011

Boulby Mine


  • British Gypsum
    Dr P Holmes
  • CPL
    Mr G Clarke (Chairman)
    Mr S Hunter
  • HSE
    Mr S P Wing
    Mr N P Hill (Secretary)
  • NUM
    Mr N Rowson
  • Salt Union
    Mr G Dunn
  • UK Coal
    Mr G Williams


  • Mr C Kitchen
  • Mr P Carragher
  • Mr G Huitson
  • Mr T Bush
  • Mr J Wood
  • Mr S Hoult

1. Introduction

Mr Clarke welcomed members to the first meeting.  He drew attention to the agreement reached by industry, at the meeting held at Mansfield on 26 November 2010, to develop and implement a mining industry safety strategy and commended this opportunity.

He said it was essential that industry leaders embraced a strategic approach to safety and continued to discourage behaviours that supported the reactive stance frequently adopted in the past.  The group agreed to seek to achieve this by working closely together and sharing information and best practice.

Mr Clarke said it was unfortunate that several TU representatives were not able to attend the first meeting but reaffirmed that they would be encouraged to attend future events.

2. Agreement of membership

It was noted that membership should comprise the most senior personnel in the industry viz: the individuals having responsibility and able to commit to agreement to the strategic approach.

Discussion on the widening the membership to encompass other sectors of the industry took place, in particular to include the small mines, and Mr Clarke said further consideration would be given to dissemination of the strategy to these sectors.

Dr Holmes agreed to represent MAUK members and Mr Williams said he would ascertain whether Coalpro would be prepared to act in a similar capacity for the small coal mines.

Action:  Messrs Holmes and Williams

In discussion it was agreed that nominated substitutes would be identified and able to replace unavailable members.  All members of the group were asked to submit the name of a nominated deputy to the secretary as soon as possible.

Action:  Members

It was suggested that the group limit its activities to producing mines where major hazards existed, however the Mr Clarke said he would give further consideration to this to ensure all interested sectors of the industry were included.

Action:  Mr Clarke

3. Terms of reference

Following slight amendment the Terms of Reference was agreed and would be recirculated with the minutes.

Action: Mr Hill

4. Agreement of mining industry safety strategy

Mr Clarke illustrated the proposal for the mining industry safety strategy comprising leadership, competence, workforce involvement and avoiding catastrophe and outlined the methodology adopted by CPL towards achieving safe and efficient operations.

Members supported the CPL approach and Dr Holmes sought clarification of the ultimate objective of the group and how success in delivering the strategy could be quantified.

It was noted that whilst a reduction in incidents provided one measurement metric, this did not necessarily address the potential for catastrophe as monitoring of events, or precursors, leading to high hazard incidents were less simple to enumerate accurately.

Members agreed that the group would review each operators' strategies to determine inherent common areas and inform the future approach of the group.

Mr Wing drew attention to the Cabinet Office "Red Tape Challenge" exercise to review all existing legislation together with the "crowd sourcing" project.  The mining legislation review would commence during July 2011 and industry would be invited to comment during the consultation process.

This would accompany the simultaneous DWP/HSE Lofsted's independent review of health and safety legislation which may engender further consultation.

5. Vision for next meeting

Members agreed to present their individual strategies to the next meeting to give members the opportunity to examine each approach.
Action:  Members

Addressing high level risk assessment processes, Dr Holmes drew attention to the exercise undertaken by British Gypsum to assess the control measures in place to prevent low probability, high hazard incidents. 

As part of this process, history of previous incidents, circumstances, root cause, perceptions etc were being analysed to identify any common themes and categorise the risks.  It was suggested a similar approach be developed by the group through a sub-committee.

Working groups previously reporting to the Mining Industry Committee were reviewed and views expressed that several of these, SHMRAB, Engineering Liaison, Escape and Rescue etc should be reviewed to see whether they were still relevant or should be reconstituted under the auspices of MISLG.  The work addressing competence currently being undertaken would continue with a regular report being delivered to the group.  Mr Dunn agreed to undertake this role.

Action:  Mr Dunn

It was agreed a new sub-committee addressing mining engineering issues be formed to share strategic information between operators.  Dr Holmes said he would chair this group which would include Mr Hunter, CPL and Mr Hoult UK Coal and Mr Denton, HSE as members.  Nominations from absent MISLG members would be sought for additional sub-committee representatives.

Action:  Mr Hill

Mr Wing agreed to report to MISLG on the work of the Engineering Liaison Committee with the possibility of future industry chairmanship being reviewed at a later date.

Action: Mr Wing

The Escape and Rescue from Mines Committee would not fall within the remit of MISLG but would continue to be available for consultation as required.

6. Date, place and time of next meetings

The next meetings would take place on:

The first meeting of the Mining Engineering sub-committee would be held on:

10.00am Wednesday 22 June 2011 - Mansfield Mines Rescue Station

Mr Dunn said he would facilitate an underground visit at the mine in November 2011 subject to members' interest.

7. Close

Mr Clarke closed the meeting and thanked members for their attendance and contributions.

8. Terms of reference

8.1 Name

The full title shall be the "Mining Industry Safety Leadership Group" (MISLG).

8.2 Role

The primary role of this body is to provide a forum for to develop, lead and implement a strategy for health and safety in the mining industry:

Further to 2.1 the MISLG shall address specific strategic goals:

MISLG will engage with the wider health and safety community in pursuance of 2.2

MISLG will also make recommendations to HSE and other government bodies, as appropriate, on issues such as policies and legislation.

8.3 Scope

MISLG shall be tripartite with representation drawn from employers' organisations, trade unions and HSE.

8.4 Membership criteria

Owners Representatives/members will commit to plan and deliver the Strategy.

Owners Representatives/members will commit to disseminating the Strategy and involving the wider industry.

Chairmanship will be provided by Industry

Secretariat will be provided by HSE.

Four meetings will be held annually..

8.5 Power to amend Constitution

The MISLG shall have the power to amend the constitution and terms of reference.