Nation’s premier mine health, safety training facility turns 40
MSHA, mining community celebrate national academy’s anniversary

ARLINGTON, Va. – Over the past 40 years, tens of thousands of mine inspectors and mine safety professionals have passed through the doors of the National Mine Health and Safety Academy in West Virginia. Dedicated in 1976, the complex houses the world’s largest educational institution devoted solely to training in mine health and safety. It is one of just seven permanent federal academies in the U.S.

On Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2016, the Mine Safety and Health Administration will commemorate the academy’s four decades of service with a ceremony and keynote address by MSHA Assistant Secretary Joseph A. Main. Representatives from the U.S. Congress and the mining industry will join Main during the program.

“Education and training are vital components in improving the health and safety of the nation’s miners. The National Mine Health and Safety Academy plays a critical role in our ability to carry out our mission,” said Main. “MSHA, miners across the nation and the mining industry owe a tremendous debt to the academy for its invaluable contributions over the past 40 years.”

Based in Beckley, the academy exposes students to a variety of different disciplines in nine different laboratories: roof control, ground control, mine emergency and mine rescue, ventilation, electrical, machinery, industrial hygiene, computer, and underground mine simulation. On 80-acres in nine buildings, the academy includes classrooms, mine machine and simulation laboratories, mine emergency operations equipment, a publication distribution center and residence hall. It also offers a Technical Information Center and Library containing an extensive collection of research and study materials, including periodicals, books, archival material, maps, technical reports and more than 1,000 historical photos.