Recommended Operator Policy for Brake Testing

Reports by Operators of MSHA inspectors' brake inspections procedures have little consistency as to location of the test or the individual inspector's procedural requirements for the testing.

The reports vary from Operator to Operator. The most common parking brake scenario reported is that on "parking brake testing". The inspector wants the operator to position the equipment on the steepest grade (usually a haul road in the down lane). The equipment operator is then told to set his parking brake, take his feet off the service brake and hold up his hands. If the truck creeps forward a citation on parking brakes is issued.

The Equip. Operator, at the inspector's direction, is "sitting in an improperly parked and unattended loaded truck". This is prohibited by 56.14207 because it creates the danger of the equipment bolting ahead when accelerated and being a hazard to the Miners and Quarrymen in the pit.

56.14207 Parking procedures for unattended equipment.

"Mobile equipment shall not be left unattended unless the controls are placed in the park position and the parking brake, if provided, is set.

"When parked on a grade, the wheels or tracks of mobile equipment shall be either chocked or turned into a bank."

 

Frontend loaders are to be tested with empty buckets and always parked with the bucket on the ground to prevent run away and hazard to Miners. (See 56.14101(3) (i) below).

 

Some inspectors are also compelling the Operator to violate 56.14205 Machinery, equipment, and tools because they require the Equipment Operator, on level ground, to set the Parking brake and accelerate.

The Law states,"Machinery, equipment, and tools shall not be used beyond the design capacity intended by the manufacturer where such use may create a hazard to persons."

No mobile equipment manufacturer designs "parking brakes" to hold when the vehicle is accelerated. It is not, by design, an "emergency brake".

$afepro recommends that Site Operators and Mobile Equipment Operators insist that the vehicle to be inspected be parked in such a manner that it does not violate (The LAW) Standards or create a potential hazard to persons (including the Equipment Operator).

MSHA inspectors do not have the Constitutional or Legal authority to require Operators to "break the LAW"or to create a hazard to their people! (If you give away your Constitutional and Legal Rights, it is your fault!)

Standards and Published Enforcement Policy bearing out the recommendation relevant to Brakes and Parking of Equipment are found in Part 56 and PPM Vol. IV.

56.14101 Brakes.

(a) Minimum requirements. (1) Self-propelled mobile equipment shall be equipped with a service brake system capable of stopping and holding the equipment with its typical load on the maximum grade it travels. (This is not the steepest grade on your property.) This standard does not apply to equipment which is not originally equipped with brakes unless the manner in which the equipment is being operated requires the use of brakes for safe operation. This standard does not apply to rail equipment.

(ii) The approach shall be sufficient length to allow the equipment operator to reach and maintain a constant speed between 10 and 20 miles per hour prior to entering the 100 foot measured area. The constant speed shall be maintained up to the point when the equipment operator receives the signal to apply the brakes. The roadway shall be wide enough to accommodate the size of the equipment being tested. The ground shall be generally level, packed, and dry in the braking portion of the test course. Ground moisture may be present to the extent that it does not adversely affect the braking surface.

(iii) Braking is to be performed using only those braking systems, including auxiliary retarders, which are designed to bring the equipment to a stop under normal operating conditions. Parking or emergency (secondary) brakes are not to be actuated during the test.

(iv) The tests shall be conducted with the transmission in the gear appropriate for the speed the equipment is traveling except for equipment which is designed for the power train to be disengaged during braking.

(v) Testing speeds shall be a minimum of 10 miles per hour and a maximum of 20 miles per hour.

(vi) Stopping distances shall be measured from the point at which the equipment operator receives the signal to apply the service brakes to the final stopped position.
 
(4) Test results shall be evaluated as follows:

(See 56.14207 Parking procedures for unattended equipment)

(b) Testing. (1) Service brake tests shall be conducted when an MSHA inspector has reasonable cause to believe that the service brake system does not function as required, unless the mine operator removes the equipment from service for the appropriate repair; (The Operator can request the test if he wishes.)
 

(2) The performance of the service brakes shall be evaluated according to Table M-1.

( See 30CFR, Part 56.14001)

(3) Service brake tests shall be conducted under the direction of the mine operator in cooperation with and according to the instructions provided by the MSHA inspector as follows:

(i) Equipment capable of traveling at least 10 miles per hour shall be tested with a typical load for that particular piece of equipment. Front-end loaders shall be tested with the loader bucket empty. Equipment shall not be tested when carrying hazardous loads, such as explosives.

(i) If the initial test run is valid and the stopping distance does not exceed the corresponding stopping distance listed in Table 1, the performance of the service brakes shall be considered acceptable. For tests to be considered valid, the equipment shall not slide sideways or exhibit other lateral motion during the braking portion of the test.

ii) If the equipment exceeds the maximum stopping distance in the initial test run, the mine operator may request from the inspector up to four additional test runs with two runs to be conducted in each direction. The performance of the service brakes shall be considered acceptable if the equipment does not exceed the maximum stopping distance on at least three of the additional tests.

(5) Where there is not an appropriate test site at the mine or the equipment is not capable or traveling at least 10 miles per hour, service brake tests will not be conducted. In such cases, the inspector will rely upon other available evidence to determine whether the service brake system meets the performance requirement of this standard.

[53 FR 32521, Aug. 25, 1988; 53 FR 44588, Nov. 4, 1988

(3) All braking systems installed on the equipment shall be maintained in functional condition.


(2) If equipped on self-propelled mobile equipment, parking brakes shall be capable of holding the equipment with its typical load on the maximum grade it travels

(iii) Braking is to be performed using only those braking systems, including auxiliary retarders, which are designed to bring the equipment to a stop under normal operating conditions.

Parking or emergency (secondary) brakes are not to be actuated during the test.

(iv) The tests shall be conducted with the transmission in the gear appropriate for the speed the equipment is traveling except for equipment which is designed for the power train to be disengaged during braking.

(v) Testing speeds shall be a minimum of 10 miles per hour and a maximum of 20 miles per hour.

(vi) Stopping distances shall be measured from the point at which the equipment operator receives the signal to apply the service brakes to the final stopped position.
 
(4) Test results shall be evaluated as follows:

(i) If the initial test run is valid and the stopping distance does not exceed the corresponding stopping distance listed in Table 1, the performance of the service brakes shall be considered acceptable. For tests to be considered valid, the equipment shall not slide sideways or exhibit other lateral motion during the braking portion of the test.

(ii) If the equipment exceeds the maximum stopping distance in the initial test run, the mine operator may request from the inspector up to four additional test runs with two runs to be conducted in each direction. The performance of the service brakes shall be considered acceptable if the equipment does not exceed the maximum stopping distance on at least three of the additional tests.

(5) Where there is not an appropriate test site at the mine or the equipment is not capable or traveling at least 10 miles per hour, service brake tests will not be conducted. In such cases, the inspector will rely upon other available evidence to determine whether the service brake system meets the performance requirement of this standard.

[53 FR 32521, Aug. 25, 1988; 53 FR 44588, Nov. 4, 1988