[Federal Register Volume 73, Number 142 (Wednesday, July 23, 2008)]
[Pages 42813-42814]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E8-16862]



Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


Proposed Data Collections Submitted for Public Comment and 

    In compliance with the requirement of section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the 
Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 for opportunity for public comment on 
proposed data collection projects, the Centers for Disease Control and 
Prevention (CDC) will publish periodic summaries of proposed projects. 
To request more information on the proposed projects or to obtain a 
copy of the data collection plans and instruments, call 404-639-5960 or 
send comments to Maryam Daneshvar, Ph.D., CDC Acting Reports Clearance 
Officer, 1600 Clifton Road, MS-D74, Atlanta, GA 30333 or send an e-mail 
to omb@cdc.gov.
    Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of 
information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of 
the agency, including whether the information shall have practical 
utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the 
proposed collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, 
utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways 
to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, 
including through the use of automated collection techniques or other 
forms of information technology. Written comments should be received 
within 60 days of this notice.

Proposed Project

    Survey of NIOSH Recommended Safety and Health Practices for Coal 
Mines--NEW--National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health 
(NIOSH), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Background and Brief Description

    Since its establishment in 1970 by the Occupational Safety and 
Health Act, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health 
(NIOSH) has been at the forefront of research and innovation on methods 
to help eliminate workplace injuries, illnesses and exposures. At Mine 
Safety and Health Research laboratories in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and 
Spokane, Washington, NIOSH employs engineers and scientists with 
experience and expertise in mine safety and health issues. These 
laboratories and their researchers have gained an international 
reputation for innovative solutions to many mining safety and health 
    Although the NIOSH Mining Program widely disseminates and 
publicizes research results, recommendations, techniques and products 
that emerge from the work of these laboratories, the agency has limited 
knowledge about the extent to which their innovations in mine safety 
and health have been implemented by individual mine operators. This is 
particularly true of methods and practices that are not mandated by 
formal regulations. The overarching goal of the proposed survey of 
NIOSH Recommended Safety and Health Practices for Coal Mines is to 
gather data from working coal mines on the adoption and implementation 
of NIOSH practices to mitigate safety and occupational hazards (e.g., 
explosions, falls of ground). The information with this survey will be 
used by NIOSH to evaluate the implementation of safety and health 
interventions (including best practices and barriers to implementation) 
in areas such as respirable coal dust control, explosion prevention, 
roof support, and emergency response planning and training. Survey 
results will provide NIOSH with knowledge about which recommended 
practices, tools and methods have been most widely embraced by the 
industry, which have not been adopted, and why. The survey results will 
provide needed insight from the perspective of mine operators on the 
practical barriers that may prevent wider adoption of NIOSH 
recommendations and practices designed to safeguard mine workers.
    In the spring of 2007, NIOSH conducted a pretest of the survey 
questionnaire with nine underground coal mine operators. The pretest 
instrument contained 81 questions, including five questions which 
measured the respondents' impressions of the clarity, burden level and 
relevance of the survey. The pretest served several important 

[[Page 42814]]

including gaining feedback on the flow of items and their relevance to 
the respondents' experience, assessing the effectiveness of the 
questionnaire instructions, and obtaining recommendations for improving 
the questions. Data captured in the pretest were used to identify areas 
for questionnaire improvement and recommendations for maximizing the 
performance of the full survey.
    The proposed survey will be based upon a probability sample of 
approximately 300 of the 675 underground coal mines in the United 
States. A stratified random sample of mines will be drawn to ensure 
representativeness on important dimensions such as mine size and region 
of the country. Sampling a large proportion of the underground coal 
mines will ensure low rates of sampling error and increase confidence 
in the resulting survey estimates. Over-sampling some kinds of mines, 
such as those operating longwall sections, will be necessary to ensure 
enough cases are available to conduct meaningful analysis of these mine 
    Allowing mine operators to complete the survey using the method 
they find convenient is expected to enhance the overall response rate. 
Therefore, both a Web-based and a print version of the questionnaire 
will be provided to sampled respondents. Mine operators unable to 
complete the survey through one of these two methods will be contacted 
and asked to complete the survey over the telephone. Using these 
multiple methods of administration, NIOSH expects to achieve an 80% 
rate of response to the survey. An additional method that will be used 
to reduce the overall burden on respondents will be to collect certain 
types of supplementary information (e.g., the mine's dates of 
operation, annual coal production) on each sampled mine from publicly-
available data collected by the Mine Safety and Health Administration 
    Once the study is completed, NIOSH will provide a copy of the final 
report to each sampled mining operation, and use the survey data to 
improve the adoption of important safety and health practices 
throughout the coal mine industry. NIOSH expects to complete data 
collection in the spring of 2009. There is no cost to respondents other 
than their time.

                                        Estimated Annualized Burden Table
                                                                Number of      Average burden
               Respondents                    Number of       responses per   per response (in    Total burden
                                             respondents       respondent          hours)             hours
Responding eligible coal mine operators.               240                 1             30/60               120

    Dated: July 10, 2008.
Maryam Danneshvar,
Acting Reports Clearance Officer, Office of the Chief Science Officer, 
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
 [FR Doc. E8-16862 Filed 7-22-08; 8:45 am]