Announcing Conn Maciel Carey’s 2020 MSHA Webinar Series

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2020 brings about MSHA’s third year under the guidance of Assistant Secretary Zatezalo. Since being confirmed in 2017, the Assistant Secretary has made significant strides in fundamentally changing MSHA. The traditionally separated Coal and Metal/Nonmetal divisions have merged under a single administrator, and MSHA instituted a “blurring” of Coal and Metal/nonmetal inspectors and litigation resources. Additionally, MSHA continues to engage in rulemaking efforts regarding Powered Haulage – which could lead to a proposed rule in 2020 – and Respirable Quartz (Silica). These items, coupled with MSHA’s continued practice of exceeding the minimum two or four visits per year at mine sites and the roll-out of new enforcement initiatives, add up to an MSHA that is quietly evolving under the Trump Administration. As we enter an election year, it is especially important to track MSHA’s activity as new rules and/or fundamental changes to agency structure may further alter the enforcement and compliance landscape for mine operators and independent contractors at mine sites.

Conn Maciel Carey’s complimentary 2020 MSHA Webinar Series, hosted by the firm’s national MSHA Practice Group, is designed to give you the tools to prepare your mining operations for forthcoming initiatives, rulemaking and enforcement for 2020 and beyond.

To register for an individual webinar, click the registration link in the program descriptions below. To register for the entire 2020 series, click here to send an email request, and we will get you registered. If you miss any of the programs this year or those hosted during prior years, here is a link to our webinar archive.

MSHA 2019 in Review and 2020 Forecast

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

MSHA and FMSHRC Mid-Year Update

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Preparing for and Managing MSHA Inspections

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Attorney-Client Privileged Audits and Investigations

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

MSHA Part 50 and Training Recordkeeping Requirements

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Legal Responsibilities and Liabilities with Contractors at a Mine

Thursday, December 12, 2019


MSHA 2019 in Review and 2020 Forecast

Tuesday, February 11, 2020 at 1 PM ET

Presented by Nicholas W. Scala

As we move into 2020, the last year of the Trump Administration’s first term, a new MSHA is taking form. The Agency has undergone, and continues to undergo, significant changes with its personnel, structure, and priorities. In this webinar, we will examine MSHA’s 2019 with respect to enforcement, rulemaking, and the One MSHA “blurring” of the Coal and Metal/Nonmetal divisions. We will also explore the potential areas of emphasis for the upcoming year and outline several items mine operators and independent contractors should monitor during 2020.

During this webinar, participants will learn about:

  • 2019 MSHA enforcement trends and statistics;
  • The status of existing and new MSHA enforcement initiatives;
  • Review of One MSHA Blurring of the Coal and Metal/Nonmetal enforcement divisions; and
  • Status of M/NM Workplace Exam, Powered Haulage, and Respirable Quartz rulemaking.

Click here to register.

Preparing for and Managing MSHA Inspections

 Thursday, March 26, 2020 at 1 PM ET

Presented by Nicholas W. Scala

Knowing how to conduct yourself while engaging with MSHA during inspections or investigations can serve to make the process more efficient, and also help operators avoid misunderstandings with MSHA personnel, which can make visits from the Agency spiral. This webinar will serve to give operators, and their representatives, a set of guidelines for how to conduct themselves when MSHA is on site. It will discuss best practices for preparing for personnel and mine site MSHA’s imminent arrival. This webinar will cover miner and company rights during visits from MSHA, and how to best position the company to avoid the issuance of harmful citations and orders.

During this webinar, participants will learn about:

  • Strategies for interacting with MSHA while inspectors are on site;
  • Tips for preparing for MSHA to arrive at your facility; and
  • Best practices to train miners to accompany and manage MSHA inspections and investigations.

Click here to register.

MSHA Part 50 and Training Recordkeeping Requirements

Tuesday, May 26, 2020 at 1 PM ET

Presented by Nicholas W. Scala

MSHA’s Injury and Illness Recordkeeping regulations are contained in 30 C.F.R. §50, more commonly referred to as Part 50. Part 50 includes MSHA’s standards such as what constitutes an immediately reportable incident, a reportable injury or illness, and what investigation records must be maintained in the event of an accident, just to name a few. While, separately, MSHA requires the maintenance of all applicable training records, such as new miner, annual refresher, site specific, and task training in 30 C.F.R. §§46 & 48, record audits by MSHA frequently cover both areas. During this webinar, participants will learn some of the most basic and yet cited recordkeeping requirements under Parts 46, 48, and 50 and how to prevent issuance at your operation.

During this webinar, participants will learn about:

  • Part 50 reporting and recordkeeping requirements;
  • Determining reportability of injury and illness at a mine site; and
  • Standard governing of the creation, maintenance, and production of training records and programs under MSHA.

Click here to register.

MSHA and FMSRHC Mid-Year Update

Tuesday, July 21, 2020 at 1 PM ET

Presented by Nicholas W. Scala

With a full slate of commissioners at the Federal Mine Safety and Health Review Commission (”FMSHRC”), there were a relatively steady stream of MSHA decisions published in the last half of 2019. This trend should continue into the first half of 2020 at least, which means the compliance expectations and standards that mine operators must adhere to will continue to evolve. This hasn’t been much more evident recently than when the federal appellate court mandated that MSHA change its M/NM Workplace Exam Rule. Additionally, this webinar will take stock of what MSHA’s priorities from enforcement and rulemaking have been year-to-date, and how any developments from MSHA or the FMSHRC are directly impacting the compliance responsibilities of operators.

During this webinar, participants will learn about:

  • MSHA enforcement trends and initiatives through mid-2020;
  • FMSHRC decisions impacting mine operators and independent contractors; and
  • Strategies to prepare operations for changing enforcement tactics and standard interpretations.

 Click here to register.

Attorney-Client Privileged Audits and Investigations and OSHA’s Self-Audit Policy

Tuesday, September 22, 2020 at 1 PM ET

Presented by Kate McMahon, Micah Smith, Nick Scala, and Beeta Lashkari

Safety and health audits, and accident or near-miss investigations are invaluable tools to identify hazards at a workplace and improve safety, but what happens when a government regulator demands copies of the reports and/or recommendations from the audit or investigation? When not done carefully or under attorney-client privilege, audit and investigation reports can serve as admissions and/or a roadmap for OSHA and MSHA investigators or plaintiffs’ attorneys regarding areas of non-compliance. This in turn can create a disincentive for employers to audit their facilities.

This webinar will explore the benefits of conducting audits and investigations at the direction of counsel so as to improve safety and compliance while also protecting the company and management from adverse use by 3rd party litigants or regulators. We will review audit and investigation and report-writing strategies and best practices. We will also review OSHA’s policy on self-audits and the reality of OSHA’s use of voluntary self-audits during inspections. And we will review best practices to manage MSHA’s unlimited lookback period for enforcement.

​Participants in this webinar will learn about:

  • Implementing attorney-client privileged audit programs and investigations
  • Maintaining privilege over results of audits and investigations, while still effectively implementing findings
  • How OSHA, MSHA or 3rd party litigants can use self-audits and inspections against an employer
  • OSHA and MSHA statute of limitations and policies on lookback for audit and incident and/or near miss reports

Click here to register.

Legal Responsibilities and Liabilities for Mine Operators and Contractors at MSHA Facilities

Tuesday, December 1, 2020 at 1 PM ET

Presented by Nicholas W. Scala

The relationship between production operator and independent contractor at a mine site is more critical than ever to the industry. Most operations welcome contractors on site to perform tasks, from routine equipment maintenance, to specialty construction and service. With the increase in contractors in the mining industry, MSHA recently noted a sharp increase in the number of serious and fatal injuries sustained by contractors. Now, independent contractors will be under a microscope when at mine sites. Therefore, it is essential for production operations and their contractors to understand the obligations of each party under MSHA.  This webinar will review the delineation of responsibilities for both production and independent contractors.  It will also provide strategies for working cooperatively while protecting each company’s interests.

During this webinar, participants will learn about:

  • Liability under the Mine Act for all production operators and independent contractors working at a mine;
  • MSHA’s ability to cite both companies for the violations of the one operator;
  • Strategies for independent contractors to improve safety and health programs at MSHA sites; and
  • Best practices for production operators pre-qualifying and monitoring contractors.

Click here to register.

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