Dear Eastern PA ISEE Newsletter readers,
Among the changes to the Chapter 211 regulations are requirements for communication between the driller and blaster before any holes are loaded and documentation of that communication in the form of a drill log to be attached to the blast record. It is a must that the blaster be aware of the condition of a bore hole prior to loading. The blaster must be aware if there are mud seams, fractures in the rock, voids, clay, dirt or other inconsistencies in the rock before the hole is loaded so that the blast can be efficient and compliant with Chapter 211 regulations. After the blast is detonated and blast performance is evaluated, it is just as important to have detailed information on why certain things were done—detailed information on pre-blast conditions of the rock and detailed information on how the holes were loaded. All the information can be used to understand why seismograph monitoring information and videos of the blast appear as they do.
Another change to Chapter 211 is the requirement that a blaster have a copy of the Blasting Activity Permit (BAP) available to him while blasting. BAP’s are supposed to contain information that demonstrates that the proposed blasting activity can reasonably be expected to comply with Chapter 211. Some of the information, such as blast loading plans are sufficiently detailed that it would benefit the blaster to have the permit in hand. For example, BAP’s often have information regarding road blocking or precautions that must be taken in lieu of road blocking. By having a BAP in hand while designing and loading a blast, the blaster is in a better position to ensure that blasting is conducted safely and in compliance with Chapter 211.
Please be safe out there!