Coal Mining Risk Assessments
Coal mining took place historically throughout vast areas of central Scotland, where coal is found close to surface and at depth. This has left a legacy of unstable ground due to collapse of shallow workings and shafts. Polluted mine-water and mine gas can also be significant hazards where land has been undermined. The Coal Authority operate a risk based approach to screen planning applications for development within the coalfields.
Anyone can buy a CON29M Coal Authority report to find out what mining records are available for their property. However when developments fall within development high risk areas, further site specific investigations are often necessary and may be made a requirement of planning consent or in support of building warrant application.
In high risk areas of the coalfield a coal mining risk assessment (CMRA) is usually required to validate planning applications made by non householder and commercial applicants. For householder applications the responsibility for ensuring mineral stability has been adequately evaluated for new development, which typically includes extensions, is often devolved by a Council advisory note to the certifying structural engineer.
We provide CMRA which are desk study reports in accord with Coal Authority criteria. Whilst this is often enough to validate a planning application it may result in planning conditions requiring more detailed investigation. Where necessary we also provide intrusive investigation and interpretative reporting to establish if mineral stability, groundwater pollution or mine gas emissions present unacceptable risk to the proposed development.
Investigations into coal mines typically include rotary probing and coring of bedrock, groundwater and mine gas sampling and monitoring. Mineral stability investigations require application to the Coal Authority to obtain permits, with submission of risk assessments and methods of working in accord with best practice procedures. Millard work with industry specialist drilling contractors to design investigation works, obtain necessary permits and establish health and safety procedures for the investigations. Where risk mitigation is required we also provide consultancy and design services.
If coal mining issues are affecting your development please do not hesitate to get in touch for free no obligation advice and proposals to manage risk and negotiate the regulatory approvals process.