30 CFR 100.3 - Determination of penalty amount; regular assessment.

§ 100.3 Determination of penalty amount; regular assessment.
(a) General.
(1) Except as provided in § 100.5(e), the operator of any mine in which a violation occurs of a mandatory health or safety standard or who violates any other provision of the Mine Act, as amended, shall be assessed a civil penalty of not more than $70,000. Each occurrence of a violation of a mandatory safety or health standard may constitute a separate offense. The amount of the proposed civil penalty shall be based on the criteria set forth in sections 105(b) and 110(i) of the Mine Act. These criteria are:
(i) The appropriateness of the penalty to the size of the business of the operator charged;
(ii) The operator's history of previous violations;
(iii) Whether the operator was negligent;
(iv) The gravity of the violation;
(v) The demonstrated good faith of the operator charged in attempting to achieve rapid compliance after notification of a violation; and
(vi) The effect of the penalty on the operator's ability to continue in business.
(2) A regular assessment is determined by first assigning the appropriate number of penalty points to the violation by using the appropriate criteria and tables set forth in this section. The total number of penalty points will then be converted into a dollar amount under the penalty conversion table in paragraph (g) of this section. The penalty amount will be adjusted for demonstrated good faith in accordance with paragraph (f) of this section.
(b) The appropriateness of the penalty to the size of the business of the operator charged. The appropriateness of the penalty to the size of the mine operator's business is calculated by using both the size of the mine cited and the size of the mine's controlling entity. The size of coal mines and their controlling entities is measured by coal production. The size of metal and nonmetal mines and their controlling entities is measured by hours worked. The size of independent contractors is measured by the total hours worked at all mines. Penalty points for size are assigned based on Tables I to V. As used in these tables, the terms “annual tonnage” and “annual hours worked” mean coal produced and hours worked in the previous calendar year. In cases where a full year of data is not available, the coal produced or hours worked is prorated to an annual basis. This criterion accounts for a maximum of 25 penalty points.
(c) History of previous violations. An operator's history of previous violations is based on both the total number of violations and the number of repeat violations of the same citable provision of a standard in a preceding 15-month period. Only assessed violations that have been paid or finally adjudicated, or have become final orders of the Commission will be included in determining an operator's history. The repeat aspect of the history criterion in paragraph (c)(2) of this section applies only after an operator has received 10 violations or an independent contractor operator has received 6 violations.
(1) Total number of violations. For mine operators, penalty points are assigned on the basis of the number of violations per inspection day (VPID)(Table VI). Penalty points are not assigned for mines with fewer than 10 violations in the specified history period. For independent contractors, penalty points are assigned on the basis of the total number of violations at all mines (Table VII). This aspect of the history criterion accounts for a maximum of 25 penalty points.
(2) Repeat violations of the same standard. Repeat violation history is based on the number of violations of the same citable provision of a standard in a preceding 15-month period. For coal and metal and nonmetal mine operators with a minimum of six repeat violations, penalty points are assigned on the basis of the number of repeat violations per inspection day (RPID) (Table VIII). For independent contractors, penalty points are assigned on the basis of the number of violations at all mines (Table IX). This aspect of the history criterion accounts for a maximum of 20 penalty points (Table VIII).
(d) Negligence. Negligence is conduct, either by commission or omission, which falls below a standard of care established under the Mine Act to protect miners against the risks of harm. Under the Mine Act, an operator is held to a high standard of care. A mine operator is required to be on the alert for conditions and practices in the mine that affect the safety or health of miners and to take steps necessary to correct or prevent hazardous conditions or practices. The failure to exercise a high standard of care constitutes negligence. The negligence criterion assigns penalty points based on the degree to which the operator failed to exercise a high standard of care. When applying this criterion, MSHA considers mitigating circumstances which may include, but are not limited to, actions taken by the operator to prevent or correct hazardous conditions or practices. This criterion accounts for a maximum of 50 penalty points, based on conduct evaluated according to Table X.
(e) Gravity. Gravity is an evaluation of the seriousness of the violation. This criterion accounts for a maximum of 88 penalty points, as derived from the Tables XI through XIII. Gravity is determined by the likelihood of the occurrence of the event against which a standard is directed; the severity of the illness or injury if the event has occurred or was to occur; and the number of persons potentially affected if the event has occurred or were to occur.
(f) Demonstrated good faith of the operator in abating the violation. This criterion provides a 10% reduction in the penalty amount of a regular assessment where the operator abates the violation within the time set by the inspector.
(g) Penalty conversion table. The penalty conversion table is used to convert the total penalty points to a dollar amount.
Table XIV—Penalty Conversion Table
Points Penalty ($)
60 or fewer 112
61 121
62 131
63 142
64 154
65 167
66 181
67 196
68 212
69 230
70 249
71 270
72 293
73 317
74 343
75 372
76 403
77 436
78 473
79 512
80 555
81 601
82 651
83 705
84 764
85 828
86 897
87 971
88 1,052
89 1,140
90 1,235
91 1,337
92 1,449
93 1,569
94 1,700
95 1,842
96 1,995
97 2,161
98 2,341
99 2,536
100 2,748
101 2,976
102 3,224
103 3,493
104 3,784
105 4,099
106 4,440
107 4,810
108 5,211
109 5,645
110 6,115
111 6,624
112 7,176
113 7,774
114 8,421
115 9,122
116 9,882
117 10,705
118 11,597
119 12,563
120 13,609
121 14,743
122 15,971
123 17,301
124 18,742
125 20,302
126 21,993
127 23,825
128 25,810
129 27,959
130 30,288
131 32,810
132 35,543
133 38,503
134 41,574
135 44,645
136 47,716
137 50,787
138 53,858
139 56,929
140 60,000
141 63,071
142 66,142
143 69,213
144 or more 70,000
(h) The effect of the penalty on the operator's ability to continue in business. MSHA presumes that the operator's ability to continue in business will not be affected by the assessment of a civil penalty. The operator may, however, submit information to the District Manager concerning the financial status of the business. If the information provided by the operator indicates that the penalty will adversely affect the operator's ability to continue in business, the penalty may be reduced.
[72 FR 13635, Mar. 22, 2007, as amended at 73 FR 7209, Feb. 7, 2008]

Title 30 published on 2014-07-01

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Title 30 published on 2014-07-01

The following are ALL rules, proposed rules, and notices (chronologically) published in the Federal Register relating to 30 CFR 100 after this date.

  • 2014-11-17; vol. 79 # 221 - Monday, November 17, 2014
    1. 79 FR - Criteria and Procedures for Assessment of Civil Penalties
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      DEPARTMENT OF LABOR, Mine Safety and Health Administration
      30 CFR Part 100