ABM Safety, Gear and Practices

ABM prides itself in our professionalism and disciplined approach to abandoned mine inspection. Over the course of 6 years, and hundreds of mines visits, we have continually evolving practices centered around safety. Our members consist of certified EMT's and First Responders who are tasked with minor and major life threatening situations. Our gear is selected per trip based on group size and target conditions. Mines are inspected for rock condition as well as air quality. The host rock is analyzed via geologic references or visual analysis to determine its condition. Our team which consists of Mechanical Engineers, Cival Engineers, make collective decisions on safety with primary goal to risk aversion. Our gear requirements consist of CSE SR100's the industry standard self rescue units, provided to real miners in the field today. Flame Safety Lamps as well as electronics based air meters are utilized to analyze the air quality within the mines. Strobe lights and chem lights are used as well as Lasers for determining depths beyond our eyesight. Fur further details on our Gear, Practices and Standards please see below. Mine conditions can vary from dark and damp to dry and picturesque almost like walking through a beautifully painted hallway with stained glass windows and ceiling fans with lights hanging down. 


ABM Gear Requirements

Group Requirements:
Air Meter/Flame Safety Lamp
First Aid

Individual Requirements:
Helmet, hard hat or similar
3 lights (we like one to be a headlamp)
Hiking shoes
Self-Contained Self-Rescue re-breather

Should bring/As Needed:
Emergency light flasher
Long rope and carabiner
Food/water rations for 2 days (Powerbars or similar)
Chest waders (as needed)
Rappel/Ascension Gear (as needed)

Extra credit
Folding shovel
Rock hammer
Strobe Light
Work Gloves
Chem Lights
Dust Masks


Safety Practices, Rules and Guidelines

Air Metering

Our Flame Safety Operating Procedures are located on the forum here:  http://forums.abandonedmines.net/viewtopic.php?t=1358

General Practices

Never scream or yell inside a mine.
Check floors for winzes, or weak construction.
Never depart or stray from the group.
Check for fallen rocks on the floor, rocks that are on the floor indicate a weak roof.
Check the ribs or sides of the mine for rock bursts.
Observe pillars for robbing or cracks.
Check air meter/flame safety lamp every 15 feet for air quality.
Take note of inside and outside temperature and oxygen levels for the mine trip.
If rapelling, descend an air meter on a rope first.
If rapelling, clear out any loose debris around shaft collar.
Check the air blowing out of a mine for explosive gasses/oxygen deficiencies.
Observe and respect all living creatures in a mine.
Take only pictures, leave only footprints.
Do not litter
Never Touch wood beams, rock walls or ceilings
Tell someone where you are going and when you plan to return
Call the group buddy and give them coordinates of our location
Once inside, do not damage, dont take anything.
Check batteries before trip
Never go alone
Use harness and rope when floor is inclined greater then 30 degrees.
Have 1 member check and certify harness and gearing before ascending/rapelling.


                     Mine Discussion Forum | Live Chat | Public Presentations |ABM Members |Contact Us      

                   Forbes Magazine Article | ABM 2008 Video | Mine Photo Contributions  | Links | About the Author