Studies & Degrees in Mining Maintenance
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Mining is a resource extractive venture. Operational and environmental risks and hazards come along with this business; thus, the need for an efficient and effective mining maintenance department that would address and mitigate the potential risks during operations and ensure the compliance of processes to environmental regulations and laws governing the area of operations. Mining maintenance personnel play a broad and crucial part in mining operations.
Mining maintenance personnel, in tandem with the mining engineers and geologists, are responsible in preparing the operations’ environmental risk assessment program. This program is done to ascertain potential hazards to the local geology and immediate biophysical environment, which includes the flora and fauna, water aquifers, upstream and downstream water bodies, and, of course, the local population, are mitigated. They are also in charge of implementing the environmental protection and enhancement program of the operations, which includes rehabilitation of mined-out areas and ensuring that tailings and other mine wastes do not leach into nearby water bodies and aquifers.
The upkeep of tools and equipment is another aspect of Mining Maintenance. In order to ensure cost-efficient operations, it is imperative that equipments are operating in full capacity. Mining maintenance personnel see to it that equipment are installed properly and are given the recommended downtime and lubrication to avoid machine breakdown. Maintenance of facilities, such as buildings structures and the delivery and distribution of water and electricity are also parts of the job. They also ensure that hazardous supplies, such as combustible materials, blasting equipment, and explosives are handled and stored properly to avoid accidents in the mine site.
Mining Maintenance education and training should impart the core competencies necessary so that candidates would be able to do their jobs when deployed in the field. Traineeships on the types of mining procedures, such as strip/surface, benching, open pit, and underground mining would really help the trainees/students acquire the technical skills required of the field. Equally important is training on risks identification and hazards assessment of these operations, and the corresponding preventive and safety standards to address identified risks. They should be imbued with social responsibility and environmental awareness to make them responsible operators. The traineeship should also include courses on mining equipment and tools - including hands-on experience on their actual use and operations. Students and trainees should have sufficient exposure to the actual operations of mining machineries, such as blasting equipment and pneumatic drills; and heavy equipment, such as pay loaders, backhoes, and bulldozers. On the management side, trainees study economics and management concepts, such as economies of scale, cost accounting, and budgeting.
Mining Maintenance is a job that requires monitoring and evaluation of processes and policies. It is a supervisory job that requires dynamic and innovative leadership. It is for people who possess strong communication and sound decision-making skills and a safety-first attitude. Ideal candidates should be objective, keen to details, and possess the innate ability and drive to adhere to strict protocols and predetermined procedures. Being physically fit to endure the rigors and hazards of the mine site is as important as other qualifications aforementioned.