PA Miners Certification Test
see also Mining Machine Runners Test

How do you examine your working place?
  1. Note if the adopted roof control plan was complied with.
  2. Visually look for loose rock, cracks, slips, clay veins, cutters, pots, or kettle bottoms in the roof.
  3. Note if the timbers are taking weight by cap pieces squeezing, posts or cross bars bent or broken.
  4. Note if bottom is heaving and ribs spalling.
  5. While examining the place, note if the mine examiner's initials and dates are marked in the face area.
  6. If no dangers are visually noted, test the roof by holding the fingers of hand against the roof and strike the roof with a bar or hammer to feel if a vibration exists or a dull sound which designates a bad roof.
  7. Note if the line curtain is properly hung and that the ventilation is being conducted to the face.
  8. Note if the place is properly cleaned up and rock dusted.
If any danger existed, what action would you take?
If I could remove the danger without endangering myself, I would.  If not, I would danger the place off and report it to the foreman.

How often should you test the roof?
Frequently, and as often as necessary, especially when setting or changing timbers.

What is the required minimum roof support spacing in your mine's approved roof control plan?

Are you permitted by law to enter old workings or leave the working place assigned to you without permission?  Why or why not?
No.  Because if you became injured or lost, no one would know where you were.  Also, it is the law.

Who must wear eye protection?
Everyone doing eye hazardous work, such as digging coal or rock, setting posts, using hammers, chisels and anyone riding in an open mantrip.

Why must you check in and out of the mine when you enter and leave?
So that anyone knows whether you are in or out of the mine.

If a person is intoxicated, is he permitted in or around the mine?  Why or why not?
No.  It is the law and he could endanger himself and his fellow workmen.

What kind of clothing should a person wear who works around machinery or haulage equipment?
Snug fitting clothing.

Are you permitted to charge, tamp, or fire shots in the mine?  Why or why not?
No.  I am not certified or qualified.

Name five (5) things you should know the locations of in case of an emergency.
  1. Communication-telephone.
  2. First-aid equipment.
  3. Location of power center and power nips or plugs.
  4. Location of fire extinguishers, water and/or rock dust.
  5. Escapeway, self-rescuer (SCSR) Transportation, drinking water.
What is a manhole?
A shelter hole cut in the coal and/or rock strata for a person to get into when moving trips are passing by.

What tool should be used/or pulling down rock?

A bar of suitable length so that one can stay out of danger while pulling rock.

What is first aid?

First Aid is the temporary but immediate treatment to anyone sick or injured until the arrival of a doctor or physician.

What are the fundamentals of first aid?
  1. Artificial respiration.
  2. Control of bleeding.
  3. Treatment for physical shock.
  4. Treatment of cuts, wounds, or burns.
  5. Fracture and dislocations.
  6. Transportation.
Why are they listed in this order?

This is the order of importance.  For example, control of bleeding does not help if one is not breathing and so forth.

What is physical shock?

It is the complete collapse of a person's respiratory, circulatory, and nervous system.

What is a pressure point?

It is a point on the body where the artery comes near the surface over a bony structure.

How many are there?

Twenty-two eleven on each side.

What purpose can knowing their locations serve?

One can control bleeding at these points.

What is a tourniquet?

A device such as a belt, rope, and so on used to stop bleeding as a last resort.

What is a compound fracture?

It is fracture when the bone protrudes through the skin or flesh.

Who should take first aid?


What is the single biggest cause of fatalities in coal mines?

Falls of roof and coal.

What would you do if you discovered a small fire in the mine?

First, try to extinguish it.  Then, if you cannot extinguish it, notify your foreman and persons who may be inby the fire.

When operating a shuttle car, what direction should the headlights be on?

Direction of travel.

When operating a shuttle car, what direction should the operator be facing?

Direction of travel.

How many apprentice miners are permitted to work with a certified miner?


Where do you apply rock dust?

Roof, ribs, and bottom.

Why do you use rock dust?

To neutralize the combustibility of coal dust.

Why do we have mine examiners?

To examine the mine to determine whether it is safe for persons to enter.

What would you do if the roof conditions got so bad that you did not think you could make the place safe?

Danger off all entrances to the area and report it to your foreman.

When should people get on or off mantrips?

When the mantrip is at a complete stop.

PA Mining Machine Runners Test

How often should the machine operator test for gas?
At least every 30 minutes.

How close to the face can a machine be moved before you test for gas?

Last open cross cut.

Where is methane normally found?

Near the roof because it is lighter than air.

How many splices are permitted in a trailing cable?

Five (5) are permitted.  After the fifth splice is made the cable will be changed before the next shift.

How do you test the roof?

Sight, sound, and vibration.

Where do you test for gas?

Not less than one (1) foot from the roof, face, and rib of the working place.

If gas is found in the working place, what should you do?

De-energize the equipment and notify the foreman.

How often are you required to examine the trailing cable?


If you found explosive gas in a working place in which the machine was operating, when would you again operate that machine?

After gas had been rendered harmless and the place had been re-examined by the foreman.

What is the first thing you would do upon coming into a working place?

Evaluate the conditions of the place and check for the foreman's date and initials.

When may a machine operator mine past the last row of bolts?

Only with a state approved deep cut plan in conjunction with a remote controlled miner.

If arcing were noticed between machines, what would you do?

De-energize the equipment and notify the foreman.

Are you permitted to leave a mining machine


What is the most common dangerous gas encountered in bituminous coal mines?


What is the explosive range of methane?

Five (5%) to fifteen (15%) - 10% being the most explosive.

Is methane heavier or lighter than air?


Is methane poisonous?


What is the ignition temperature of methane?

Eleven hundred degrees to thirteen hundred eighty degrees Fahrenheit (1100 to 1380)

When testing for O2 deficiency, where do you place your gas detector?

Near the bottom, low areas.

Is coal dust suspended in air explosive?


Is it your duty to determine the safety of the roof and sides of working places in which you cut?  Explain why or why not.

Yes.  No man shall be placed in charge of a coal-cutting machine that is not capable of determining the safety of the roof and sides.

What would you do if you find defects in a machine cable?

De-energize power to machine and notify foreman in charge.

When are you required to wear respiratory equipment?

Workman exposed to gas, dust, fumes and mist inhalation hazards shall wear approved respiratory equipment.

As a machine operator, when are you required to report defects in your machine and to whom?

Promptly to your foreman in charge.

What shall be done to the cutting devices of drilling machines when they are parked or being trammed?

They shall be locked securely by mechanical means or electrical interlocks.

What is the minimum quantity of air required in the last open crosscut?

Nine thousand (9,000) cubic feet per minute.

How often shall the extendible probe used in conjunction with the methane detector be checked?

Prior to each operating shift.