United States Code
USC most recently checked for updates: Mar 24, 2023
The operator of a coal mine shall have in a fireproof repository located in an area on the surface of the mine chosen by the mine operator to minimize the danger of destruction by fire or other hazard, an accurate and up-to-date map of such mine drawn on scale. Such map shall show the active workings, all pillared, worked out, and abandoned areas, except as provided in this section, entries and aircourses with the direction of airflow indicated by arrows, contour lines of all elevations, elevations of all main and cross or side entries, dip of the coalbed, escapeways, adjacent mine workings within one thousand feet, mines above or below, water pools above, and either producing or abandoned oil and gas wells located within five hundred feet of such mine and any underground area of such mine, and such other information as the Secretary may require. Such map shall identify those areas of the mine which have been pillared, worked out, or abandoned which are inaccessible or cannot be entered safely and on which no information is available. Such map shall be made or certified by a registered engineer or a registered surveyor of the State in which the mine is located. Such map shall be kept up to date by temporary notations and such map shall be revised and supplemented at intervals prescribed by the Secretary on the basis of a survey made or certified by such engineer or surveyor.
The coal mine map and any revision and supplement thereof shall be available for inspection by the Secretary or his authorized representative, by coal mine inspectors of the State in which the mine is located, by miners in the mine and their representatives and by operators of adjacent coal mines and by persons owning, leasing, or residing on surface areas of such mines or areas adjacent to such mines. The operator shall furnish to the Secretary or his authorized representative and to the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, upon request, one or more copies of such map and any revision and supplement thereof. Such map or revision and supplement thereof shall be kept confidential and its contents shall not be divulged to any other person, except to the extent necessary to carry out the provisions of this chapter and in connection with the functions and responsibilities of the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.
Whenever an operator permanently closes or abandons a coal mine, or temporarily closes a coal mine for a period of more than ninety days, he shall promptly notify the Secretary of such closure. Within sixty days of the permanent closure or abandonment of the mine, or, when the mine is temporarily closed, upon the expiration of a period of ninety days from the date of closure, the operator shall file with the Secretary a copy of the mine map revised and supplemented to the date of the closure. Such copy of the mine map shall be certified by a registered surveyor or registered engineer of the State in which the mine is located and shall be available for public inspection.