HC Deb 13 July 1937 vol 326 c1045
34. Mr. Tinker

asked the Secretary for Mines whether he is aware that many long wall faces worked by coal cutters are over 100 yards in length, and that no outlets are provided other than the openings at each end of the face; and will he instruct his inspectors to examine such faces to see if it would be safer to have more outlets?

Captain Crookshank

I am aware of the facts in relation to such outlets, but I am advised that the limitation of the number of gateways on longwall faces tends to ensure greater safety from falls of ground, since a large proportion of the accidents from falls of roof at the face occur at and about gate-ends. As regards the second part, the matter has already been closely studied by His Majesty's inspectors, and it has been raised in evidence at the Royal Commission. I do not think that any specific instructions to His Majesty's inspectors are called for at present.

Mr. Tinker

Will the Secretary for Mines ask the inspector to have a talk with the workmen on these cases in order to see what their opinion is about more outlets, and I venture to say that he will be advised to have further safety outlets?

Captain Crookshank

Of course, all matters of safety are always considered by the inspectors.

Mr. R. J. Taylor

Will the hon. and gallant Gentleman at the same time ask his inspectors what effect less speeding up would have on the accident rates?