by Nancy Profera, Associate Editor, Mining Engineering Magazine

There’s a saying that for every minute spent on planning, 10 are saved on execution. This adage applies well to mine safety emergency scenarios, where nothing could be more critical than being prepared, saving time and potentially lives. Planning and practice are essential toward continuous improvement and increased safety. Practice situations that are as realistic as possible, all while getting to know one’s teammates and developing an understanding of the environment—also known as situational awareness or threat assessment—are essential to saving lives in any risky or dangerous situation, and are especially so for miners. This is exactly why miners throughout the United States and world embark on mine rescue training events and take part in competitions each year where they test their training and skills in as-close-to-realistic situations as possible.

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