Both underground and surface mining activities always take place in a dangerous environment. Moisture, corrosive and inflammable vapors, abrasive dust and the risk of rock collapses are all real challenges. For all these reasons, only experienced and skilled individuals should be tasked with performing underground mining services. The role of underground mining electricians is very important in ensuring the safety of the work environment.
Main duties of underground mining electricians
Mining electricians often work with heavy machinery and equipment. Among their main responsibilities are doing maintenance work on the electric equipment in mines, including circuit breakers, contactors, switchgears, electromagnetic braking systems, electrical motors, communication systems, mine-duty transformers, light switches and all the electrical, hydraulic, and mechanical machinery used in underground mines.
Their job in the industry of underground mining services also involves conducting inspections of the equipment in the mines to make sure they meet safety standards and fix them when the need arises. Examples of such equipment are microprocessor control systems used for extraction work or loading stations.
All underground mining electricians must be capable of installing wiring and circuit, performing electrical fitting, high voltage switching and electronics, planning wiring infrastructure, installing insulated cables and connecting switches and outlets. They can also connect cables to circuit breakers, transformers, motors and heaters, test circuits and equipment, and so on.
Underground mining electricians are also responsible of troubleshooting electrical problems, ensuring that new equipments are compatible with the already existent wiring, keeping records of the problems found and fixed as well as estimating the costs of reparation and installation of equipment and electrical systems. Additionally, they should always be ready to respond to breakdowns and blown fuses.
Tools used by underground mining electricians
Mining electricians normally use the same tools that any electrical engineer would use. These include testing and detection equipment, indicator lamps, measuring and diagnostic equipment, pipe and tube bender, voltage indicator, pliers, multimeter, insulation resistance tester, ground fault indicator tester and many more.
The work carried out by electricians is essential to properly performing underground mining services. Nowadays, most underground mine operators use electricity as a means to facilitate the activity of miners in a rather hostile working environment.
The work of underground mining electricians drive the mining industry, but they often put their very lives at risk while doing their jobs because they often encounter difficult conditions and challenges. One wrong move could compromise the entire mining activity and possibly the lives of miners.
Contact a business like Arrow Electrical Services if you have specific questions about the role of underground mining electricians within the mining industry.