HC Deb 24 November 1911 vol 31 cc1544-57

(1) For every mine newly opened after the passing of this Act, and not being a mine exempted from this provision by general regulations under this Act, there shall be provided (except within such distance from the shaft as may be fixed by the regulations of the mine) two main in take airways, which shall be of such size and shall be maintained in such condition as to afford a ready means of ingress to and egress from the workings, and one of which shall not be used for the haulage of coal.

General regulations shall be made under this Act for determining the classes of mines which ought, having regard to their natural condition, to be exempted from the foregoing provision, and those regulations shall also provide for the exemption of any mine in which the number of persons employed underground does not at any one time exceed one hundred, or which is naturally wet throughout.

(2) For every seam in a mine newly opened after the passing of this Act, which is exempted by general regulations from the foregoing provisions of this Section, and for every seam in a mine opened before the passing of this Act, there shall be provided two main airways, which shall be of such size and shall be maintained in such condition as to afford a ready means of ingress to and egress from the workings.

(3) In the case of every mine or seam newly opened after the passing of this Act, all stoppings between main intake airways and main return airways and all air-crossings in that mine or seam shall so far as practicable be so constructed as not to be liable to be destroyed in the event of an explosion, and general regulations may be made under this Act providing for the manner in which such stoppings and air-crossings are to be constructed.

(4) Where in the case of any mine or seam, whether opened before or after the passing of this Act, the air-current in the main return airway is found normally to contain more than one-half per cent. of inflammable gas, that airway shall not (except within a distance of three hundred yards from the shaft) be used for the haulage of coal from the face.

For the purpose of this provision the average percentage of inflammable gas found in six samples of air taken by an inspector in the air-current at intervals of not less than a fortnight shall be deemed to be the percentage normally contained in the air-current.

(5) In the case of every mine newly opened after the passing of this Act, the main airways if driven in the same seam shall be so arranged that they shall not at any point, except at air crossings, or within a distance of three hundred yards from the shafts, or such other distance from the shafts as may be fixed by the regulations of the mine, be less than such distances apart as shall be fixed by the regulations of the mine, and the distances from one another of the connections between the main airways shall not be less than the minimum distance specified in those regulations.

Amendments made: In Sub-section (1) after the word "every," insert the words "seam in a."—[Mr. Masterman.]

Leave out the word "passing," and insert instead thereof the words "coming into operation."—[Viscount Castlereagh.]

Consequential Amendments made in Sub-sections (2) and (3).


I beg to move, to leave out Sub-section (4).

This Sub-section was not in the original Bill, but was introduced in Grand Committee by the Under-Secretary of State. The recommendation as to the air current in the main return airway not containing more than ½ per cent. of inflammable gas is not found in the recommendations of the Royal Commission, and the Subsection seems to me inconsistent with the provision in the later part of the Bill.


I beg to second the Amendment.


This Sub-section, as the hon. Member says, was not among the recommendations of the Royal Commission, and was put in in Grand Committee in a rather tentative manner, and I agreed with the Committee that before the Report stage I would see that a special investigation was made to see what the effect would be of the standard now set up. The results are rather remarkable as far as the chemical analysis of the air is concerned. We have taken samples of air in the main return airway in mines in all parts of the country, and have found it very difficult to get a mine with a standard below one-half per cent. of inflammable gas. That is a new fact which was not realised before we set out on a systematic search. We find also that it would be quite impossible in a large number of mines to conform to this regulation. The chief inspector made a very careful examination of the whole problem, and said that in many cases even the increased ventilation necessary to reduce the standard to one-half per cent., if feasible, would be even more dangerous, and that practically ventilation was up to the maximum possible without danger. In those circumstances I think I have no other alternative to offer the Committee but to confine the provisions of the Subsection to mines newly opened after the passing of the Act. Of course, that does not in the least degree prevent the continuous application of the other safety provisions in connection with the return airway. As everyone knows, dust is more and more being proved to be a greater danger than gas. We have very elaborate and stringent provisions in the coal dust Clauses for the prevention of coal dust accumulations, especially in the airways, either intake or return, and those provisions we shall press forward, but I cannot undertake the responsibility of advising that we should practically prohibit the haulage at the present time of many millions of tons, as would happen if this provision were enforced. I therefore propose, if the hon. Gentleman would withdraw his Amendment, to move an Amendment to the Clause limiting the application of this particular Sub-section to mines newly opened after the passing of the Act.


I think that the action of the Government in this matter confirms what we said in Committee, that when the Government take it upon themselves without any evidence whatever, laid either before the Committee or before the Royal Commission, to make alterations in a Bill of a purely technical character without full information, they would be placed in the invidious position in which they are now. I entirely dissent from the view that where there is any considerable percentage of gas in the return airway the haulage should be continued in that return. Where you have, for example, electric signal wires, as is now the case in nearly all the mines of the country, and where there are percentages of gas, it must be dangerous for coal to be hauled in such returns. I said in Committee that I thought ½ per cent. was too low a standard to take. I entirely dissent from the statement of the Under-Secretary that in nearly all the mines of the country the return averages show over ½ per cent. of gas. That is wholly contrary to the fact.


I said that samples were taken in six or seven mines in every district, and that in nearly all there was over ½ per cent. of gas.


I do not suppose there was any agitation on the part of the people who had gas in their return airways, and the mines referred to are those to which the inspector's attention has been directed. But that is not the statement the Under-Secretary made. His statement was that in the great majority of mines the percentage of gas in the return airway was about ½ per cent. The mines in South Wales with which I am associated are extremely fiery, but in the return airways I know of no case where we have anything like ½ per cent. of gas. There may be mines in which on analysis that percentage is exceeded, but taking the coalfields of the United Kingdom as a whole it is quite untrue to say there is anything like 1 per cent. of gas in the return airways. I believe, in some of the South Wales mines, where there are large quantities of gas given off, that it would be impossible to conform to this Section of the Bill as it at present stands. But if they are giving off over ½ per cent. of gas, that is no reason why a higher standard should not be inserted in the Bill. Therefore I propose to move an Amendment to the effect that we take out the words "one half per cent." and insert "one per cent." I do not think there is any excuse for anyone to have more than 1 per cent. in the return airway. I believe the most gaseous mines in the whole of the United Kingdom to-day are those in the Doncaster district. According to the chief inspector, the circumstances which exist there are unknown in the whole history of mines in this country.

Not only have you gas given off in enormous quantities, but in addition you have spontaneous combustion present with the gas. The inspector pointed out that these conditions have not up to the present time prevailed in the coalfields, because in Staffordshire and in other districts where spontaneous combustion takes place gas is not present, but in this new coalfield at Doncaster you have gas associated with spontaneous combustion. I can only say that in the Doncaster district, in connection with the first mine opened there, and of which I am the managing director, coal was hauled in the return airway. We encountered considerable difficulties with the gas. We found that enormous quantities of gas were given off, and we were compelled, for the sake of safety, to discontinue using the return airways. In the South Yorkshire district, where enormous quantities of gas are given off, it might at any time mean, with the presence of electric signal wires, that an inflammable mixture of gas might prevail. In point of fact, I have known time after time, in the main return ways of those mines in the Doncaster district, that the percentage of gas was not ½ per cent., but an inflammable mixture of 5 or 6 per cent. When those gases are given off in such enormous quantities the only thing to do is to at once withdraw the men. There is passed through the return ways 260,000 feet of wind heavily charged with gas, and you are going to allow people to haul coal where there is a mixture of inflammable gas in the return way. In the mines of South Wales the chief inspector found there was 1½ per cent. of gas in the return way, and he became convinced that it would not be practicable to apply this Clause generally over the coalfield; and the Under-Secretary has again put an Amendment upon the Paper, I suppose as the result of that inspection. Why does the hon. Gentleman pass from his former proposal? His Amendment in my opinion met the difficulties of the case. Instead of that, at the last moment, although this is one of the most highly important matters, this Clause is to be taken out, and people are to be allowed under the Bill, where there is an inflammable mixture of gas in the return way, to haul coal. I have given definite instructions that in the mines with which I am connected, where gas is given off, no coal shall be hauled in the return ways. We have done away with the hauling of coal in the return ways except in one small district, and in another month no coal will be hauled in any of the return ways. To give everybody permission to return minerals in the return ways is an unwise proceeding, and, if it be necessary, I shall certainly divide on this question.


I think the Under-Secretary has been very wise in limiting the application of this Sub-section to mines newly opened, because, if he had insisted on the Sub-section being applied to existing collieries, it is undoubtedly the fact that a very large number of collieries in the country would have had to be closed. I am told that no less than 33,000 men in South Wales alone would have been thrown out of work. It takes something over 6 per cent. of inflammable gas without coal dust to be explosive, but a very much less quantity mixed with coal dust would cause an explosion. But we have now systematic watering in South Wales which reduces any danger from coal dust. It is very difficult to understand why a man should be prohibited from working in the return airway if there is more than ½ per cent. of gas. In Clause 66 of the Bill provision is made as to the use of safety lamps, and if it is safe for a man to work in any part of the mine with anything from 1½ to 2½ per cent. of gas present, surely it must be safe for him to work in the return airway. It is known that the airway is more humid than any other part of the mine which tends towards safety. I think, to put anything like a ½ per cent. or 1 per cent. into the Clause where the chief inspector found in a great number of the mines he visited 1½ or 2 per cent. being worked with absolute safety would be absolute folly. It would be absolutely impossible to keep a number of pits going if you insist on this Section. The men would be thrown out of work, and we know that in connection with the Eight Hours Act they have been considerably reduced. [HON. MEMBERS: "No, no."] Therefore if you are going to further diminish them by provisions of this kind you are going to make the working of large collieries impossible, except at a heavy loss. I hope the Home Secretary will stick to what he has said, and also put in a reasonable percentage even with regard to new pits.


I very much regret that upon all the occasions of this House taking into consideration any mining legislation or any legislation affecting colliery owners, that the hon. Baronet and his Friends so overstate their case. That might be expected from the Labour Benches more than from those benches. If there is any exaggeration of the case it comes from the colliery owners in this House. When you were going to give the miners compensation it was going to close half the mines of this country, and when you were going to reduce the hours to eight hours per day, it was going to close more than half, and it would be simply ruinous. While I admit that it may mean cost to some colliery owners to prevent haulage in the return airway, I do ask the House seriously not to attach any importance to the highly exaggerated statement of the case by the hon. Baronet. I should like to ask the Home Office whether the inquiries they have been making with regard to the ½ per cent. have been confined to the collieries where they are at present hauling coal in the return airway. It seems to me that those are the only collieries where the inquiries should be made. Here is a highly dangerous practice admitted by the Home Office, and they seek to remedy it. While it may be necessary for the House to mitigate the hardship which admittedly there will be in the conversion to increase the percentage to 1 per cent., even that is taking a dangerous step indeed. I am really astonished at this stage of the Bill that the Under-Secretary should attempt an important alteration of this kind. If the present intake is not available for putting in haulage, surely there are very easy means of converting the present haulage roads into main intakes. In some places I admit it may be difficult. On behalf of my hon. Friends who sit on these benches, I strongly urge, if any alteration at all is to be made, that the alteration should be made rather on the lines suggested by the hon. Baronet if it is absolutely necessary, but I do not think so. The other hon. Baronet, who is in Opposition, told us it wanted a much less percentage of gas. Let the House realise what it means. You have possibly a thousand miners working in the face of a pit for eight hours making coal dust, and with every stroke of their picks releasing this highly explosive gas. All that coal dust and gas finds its way into the main return airway. It is carried off and travels with a great velocity there. In that return airway of a half mile or a mile or two miles or three miles or four miles, you have travelling at a high rate of speed a train of coal every few minutes, stirring up this dust and mixing it with this ½ per cent. or 1 per cent. of highly inflammable gas, it may be, and having there a highly explosive mixture. An electric signal wire, possibly coming into contact with steel, may set this mixture ablaze at any moment. I am astonished at the proposal, and I hope the Home Office will reconsider the position they are taking up on this matter.


My hon. Friend was hardly justified in assuming that the Under-Secretary had accepted the Amendment moved by the hon. Gentleman opposite. He has not accepted the Amendment, and he spoke, I can assure my hon. Friend, with very full consideration of this Clause by the Home Office. This is not a proposal which was recommended by the Royal Commission. On examination it is found that to forbid the use of the return airway for the carriage of coal where there was gas over ½per cent. would prevent the working of collieries in South Wales in which at the present time eight million tons of coal are got. That is a very serious matter, and consequently it is quite obvious that a re-examination of the Clause became necessary. In the first place, the Government do not propose to accept the Amendment which proposes to delete this Subsection. On the contrary, they propose to retain the Sub-section and to make it applicable to new mines only. My hon. Friend (Sir A. Markham) asks why we do not rely on the power to exempt mines from the operation of this Sub-section.


The Government Amendment put down the day before yesterday.


Yesterday morning we had a very careful consideration of this particular point, and upon the evidence I came to the conclusion that it would be my duty to give an exemption in every case. In these circumstances I thought it would be better not to proceed by a proviso giving power to exempt, but to confine the operation of the Sub-section to new mines only. What, as a matter of fact, do we attempt to do, and, I believe, shall succeed in doing? Under Clause 29 we take care to ensure improved ventilation. Under Clause 61 steps are taken to prevent coal dust. Undeniably, when you have gas in the return airway, and a quantity of coal dust mixing with the air, you have a very inflammable mixture. But we shall take special precautions to see that all the requirements for the prevention of coal dust are carried out in those mines in which there is danger in the use of the return airway. It would be impracticable to close these mines, and shut down the carrying of 8,000,000 tons of coal. If the hon. Member for Mansfield, who, I recognise, is a great authority on these matters, will give his mind fully to the provisions of Clause 61, and see how adequate are the requirements there laid down for the prevention of coal dust, I think he will agree that we have there, coupled with Clause 29, sufficient safeguards to ensure that in the return airway there shall not be such danger as to render the retention of this Sub-section in its present form necessary. I hope the House will believe that in this matter we are acting on the advice of His Majesty's inspectors. Again I say, this is not a proposal recommended by the Royal Commission, who had all the evidence before them, and in the circumstances it would not be right to impose now a condition so injurious to the coal trade of South Wales, especially in view of the security which we obtain by other Clauses of the Bill.


(who was very indistinctly heard): It is rather unfortunate that the hon. Member opposite should have endeavoured, as always, to lecture those who do not see eye to eye with him, and to suggest that all that the coal-owners desired was to extract further profits.


I did not use the word "profit" at all. I simply called attention to the exaggeration of the case as put forward by the hon. Baronet.


This is a Bill for securing greater safety in mines, and we are all interested in bringing about that end. It is obviously not to the interest of the coal-owner to run any risks in the mine, and I do not think there are any coal-owners in the country so short-sighted as to desire to do so. The right hon. Gentleman desires to prevent dislocation of trade all over the country, and it is not right to suggest that it is merely in the interests of the coal-owners. We are perfectly prepared to meet the right hon. Gentleman in what he has done, and we are grateful for the manner in which he is trying to meet us.


I quite understand the point of view put forward by the right hon. Gentleman, but it seems to me that the present proposal, although it will deal with new mines, will never alter the position in existing mines. I think there ought to be some time limit, or some possibility of the Home Office making regulations gradually to bring these mines into a proper condition, so that they may be more secure in the future. That point is not touched at all.


It is quite true that the Royal Commission made no recommendation in the direction of the Clause as the Government originally drafted it, but all through the report pointed to discouraging the use of return airways for haulage purposes, and that is the object of every one here. Therefore, I do not understand why, in regard to existing mines, the right hon. Gentleman and his advisers propose to do nothing in the direction of bringing to an end the practice of using return airways for haulage purposes. My right hon. Friend thinks that the standard of ½ per cent. has been proved by recent investigations to be too high. That may be so, but it is rather significant that in the Clause as originally drafted the Government took ¼per cent., and afterwards raised it to ½per cent. If the standard of ½per cent. be too high, did the recent investigations point to the possibility of having an efficient standard at all? Is the right hon. Gentleman prepared to do nothing beyond the Clauses in the Bill to set up a standard below which the return airways shall not be used for haulage purposes? If ½ per cent. is too high, why not 1 per cent. or at any rate some standard below which the use of return airways for this purpose shall be automatically prevented?


The answer to my hon. Friend is extremely simple. We do not wish to fix a standard of 1 per cent. up to which a mine may work, because the moment you fix a standard it is always regarded as the standard of safety within which you may do exactly what you like.


Very ingenious.


That is why it is undesirable to set up any such standard.


In all the circumstances of the case I shall be prepared to withdraw my Amendment, if the Government will adhere to their Amendment.


The discussion that has now taken place has proved what I ventured to say last night, that so long as you rely exclusively upon the safety lamps all sorts of laxity is allowed in other directions. The Clause as it appears in the Bill is probably unworkable. Certainly the Government, in the Amendment they have tabled, have gone to the other extreme. A provision which would apply this new rule to new mines only means that for the next twenty-five years the great bulk of mines in the country will continue working under the present conditions. The return airway will still continue to be used for haulage purposes. The hon. Baronet the Member for South Monmouthshire has shown that that means continuous danger in mines. But I rise mainly because of the statement that the passing of the Clause in the form in which it appears in the Bill will lead to a reduction of the output, as, it is said, the Mines Eight Hours Act had done. If that statement is to go to the country unchallenged, it will produce the effect that we on these benches want to restrict the output not for the sake of safety, but for other purposes. We deny that the passing of this Clause will in anyway affect the output. We point to the fact that in spite of the predictions of the mine-owners in the House and out of it as to the effect of the Eight Hours Act upon the output, that the inspector's report shows that during the year 1910, when the Act was in full operation, there was an actual increase of 534,026 tons over the preceding year. These figures are conclusive. Our contention is that the more efficient and safe you make the mines the better, not only for the workmen, but for the mine-owners as well. Therefore I would like to support the suggestion of the hon. Baronet the Member for Mansfield to leave the Clause in, but to delete the one word "one-half" and allow 1 per cent. If that be done, a very distinct move will be made towards increasing the safety of the mines and lessening the dangers.


I rise to appeal to those in the House who are neither mine-owners or miners' representatives. The course of the Debate in the House is following the lines of the Debate in the Committee. That is a duel between the Labour party and the mine-owners. [HON. MEMBERS: "No, no."] Well, it appears to me to be so, and the Under-Secretary, who was extremely fair in Committee, is just as fair in this House. His duty is to protect not only the miners and mine-owners, but that very much larger community the user of the coal. The last speaker referred to those extraordinary precautions which some Members say are not necessary—that they are also in the interest of the mine-owner. I agree with that. But the more unnecessary precautions you take the higher you raise the cost of coal, and the more profit it will be for the miner and the mine-owners, while the rest of the community suffers. It is therefore to those Members who are not specially interested in either of the parties to this duel that I appeal not to let sentiment but common sense sway them in their voting. [HON. MEMBERS: "Hear, hear."] I hear ironical cheers from the Labour Benches. The speeches of hon. Members there have been, in my opinion, extremely moderate, able, and fair. But the point that I want to impress is that the Under-Secretary is fair and Members should support him, and think something of the consumer as well as the two classes I have named.


Perhaps I may clear up some little misunderstanding, and answer the question put by the hon. Gentleman the Member for Lichfield (Mr. Warner). Hon. Members will be acting under a very grave misapprehension if they think that we are going to do nothing—that the only alternative to removing this Clause is to do nothing. The reason why we do not want to fix a higher standard than ½ per cent. is that we want to do everything in our power to bring the standard down universally below

Division No. 405.] AYES. [12.55 p.m.
Adamson, William Herbert, Col. Sir Ivor Pringle, William M. R.
Allen, Arthur Acland (Dumbartonshire) Higham, John Sharp Raphael, Sir Herbert H.
Baker, Harold T. (Accrington) Johnson, W. Richards, Thomas
Bowerman, C. W. Jones, Edgar (Merthyr Tydvil) Richardson, Thomas (Whitehaven)
Burt, Rt. Hon. Thomas Jones, Leif Stratten (Notts, Rushcliffe) Roch, Walter F. (Pembroke)
Clynes, John R. Jowett, Frederick William Smith, Albert (Lancs., Clitheroe)
Condon, Thomas Joseph Joyce, Michael Sutton, John E.
Crooks, William Lawson, Sir W. (Cumb'rld, Cockerm'th) Taylor, John W. (Durham)
Doris, W. Macdonald, J. R. (Leicester) Thorne, William (West Ham)
Edwards, Clement (Glamorgan, E.) Macdonald, J. M. (Falkirk Burghs) Wadsworth, J.
Edwards, Enoch (Hanley) Markham, Sir Arthur Basil Ward, John (Stoke-upon-Trent)
Fenwick Rt. Hon. Charles Martin, J. Wardle, George J.
Gill, A. H. Mason, David M. (Coventry) Warner, Sir Thomas Courtenay
Gladstone, W. G. C. Millar, James Duncan Watt, Henry A.
Hall, Frederick (Normanton) Nannetti, Joseph P. Williams, J. (Glamorgan)
Hardie, J. Keir (Merthyr Tydvil) Nicholson, Charles N. (Doncaster) Wilson, John (Durham, Mid)
Harvey, W. E. (Derbyshire, N. E.) Parker, James (Halifax) Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)
Haslam, James (Derbyshire) Pointer, Joseph
Havelock-Allan, Sir Henry Pollard, Sir George H. TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—Mr.
Henderson, Arthur (Durham) Ponsonby, Arthur A. W. H. Booth and Mr. Stephen Walsh.
Ashley, W. W. Benn, W. W. (Tower Hamlets, St. Geo.) Cawley, Harold T. (Heywood)
Baird, J. L. Boscawen, Sir Arthur S. T. Griffith- Chancellor, H. G.
Balcarres, Lord Burn, Colonel C. R. Chapple, Dr. William Allen
Barbury, Sir Frederick George Butcher, John George Clough, William
Banner, John S. Harmood- Cameron, Robert Collins, Stephen (Lambeth)
Bathurst, C. (Wilts, Wilton) Carlile, Sir Edward Hildred Cory, Sir Clifford John

½ per cent. We do not want to fix a standard which our experts think is above the standard that ought to prevail where the coal is to be hauled through the return airway. The House will remember that in Clause 30, which we carried, I regret to say, against the opposition of the hon. Baronet the Member for Mansfield, we took powers to definitely form a classification of mines according to the amount of inflammable gas in the return airway. We take very special regulations in connection with mines in accordance with the proportion of inflammable gas, in which the condition of the mine is taken point by point, so that prompt and effective action can be taken where it is possible to reduce the standard. We only fall back on the position which the Royal Commission took after examining the subject for four years.


I ask leave to withdraw my Amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.


I beg to move, in Sub-section (4), to leave out the word "whether" ["any mine or seam whether opened"] and to insert instead thereof the word "newly."

Question put, "That the word 'whether' stand part of the Subsection."

The House divided: Ayes, 57; Noes, 66.

Cotton, William Francis Lewis, John Herbert Robertson, Sir G. Scott (Bradford)
Crawshay-Williams, Eliot Lyell, Charles Henry Rothschild, Lionel de
Eyres-Monsell, Bolton M. Macnamara, Rt. Hon. Dr. T. J. Russell, Rt. Hon. Thomas W.
Faber, Capt. W. V. (Hants, W.) Macpherson, James Ian Sanders, Robert A.
Ferens, Thomas Robinson McKenna, Rt. Hon. Reginald Sandys, G. J. (Somerset, Wells)
Fletcher, John Samuel (Hampstead) M'Laren, Hon. F. W. S. (Lincs., Spalding) Soames, Arthur Wellesley
Gordon, Hon. John Edward (Brighton) Malcolm, Ian Stanley, Hon. G. F. (Preston)
Grant, J. A. Masterman, C. F. G. Talbot, Lord E.
Greig, Colonel J. W. Meagher, Michael Tennant, Harold John
Harvey, T. E. (Leeds, W.) Mooney, J. J. Wason, John Cathcart (Orkney)
Henderson, Major H. (Berks, Abingdon) Murray, Captain Hon. Arthur C. Webb, H.
Hickman, Col. T. E. Newman, John R. P. Wolmer, Viscount
Horne, C. Silvester (Ipswich) Palmer, Godfrey Mark Wood, Rt. Hon. T. McKinnon (Glas.)
Howard, Hon. Geoffrey Parkes, Ebenezer Wortley, Rt. Hon. C. B. Stuart-
Hunter, W. (Govan) Pearce, William (Limehouse)
Jardine, Ernest (Somerset, East) Pease, Herbert Pike (Darlington) TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—Mr. Gulland and Mr. Dudley Ward.
Jones, William S. Glyn- (Stepney) Roberts, S. (Sheffield, Ecclesall)

Question, "That the word 'newly' be there inserted instead," put, and agreed to.

Further Amendments made: In Subsection (4), after the word "except" ["except within a distance of"], to insert the words "for the purpose of removing any coal gotten in the operation of enlarging or repairing the airway, or."

Leave out the words "from the face."—[Mr. Masterman.]

In Sub-section (5), leave out the word "passing" ["after the passing of the Act"] and insert instead thereof the words "coming into operation."—[Mr. Samuel Roberts.]