§ Mr. Strang
To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the number of(a) British Coal deep coal mines, (b) licensed private deep coal mines, (c) British Coal opencast mines and (d) licensed private opencast coal mines visited by Her Majesty's mines inspectors in (i) 1986–87, (ii) 1987–88, (iii) 1988–89 and (iv) 1989–90.
§ Mr. Nicholls
The numbers of British Coal deep coal mines in operation for the years given are 110, 94, 86 and 73 respectively. Each mine was visited by the Health and Safety Executive's inspectorate of mines.
The number of operating licensed coal mines is normally between 170 and 180 and all major sites are visited at least once a year.
The numbers of opencast coal mines in operation for the years given are 186, 194, 179 and 178 respectively. All sites would normally be visited at least once a year.