Forces and equipment

The Paramilitary Mine Rescue Divisions of the Emergencies Ministry of Russia (hereinafter the PMRD) are situated in 32 regions of the Russian Federation and structurally consist of 18 Paramilitary Mine Rescue Units (hereinafter the PMRU), which include 48 Paramilitary Mine Rescue Platoons (hereinafter PMRP), 313 Mine Rescue Squads, which are equipped with special vehicles, equipment and gear. 10 Emergency Response Medical Brigades (hereinafter the ERMB) are ready to provide necessary medical aid to the mine rescuers. 10 Emergency Response Medical Brigades (hereinafter the ERMB) render medical aid to the injured employees of the facilities. The PMRD also includes 32 check-test laboratories that carry out the analysis of the air from the mine, water and materials used in rescue and recovery operations, as well as 8 services for depression survey that carry out thermal survey in underground facilities.

The PMRD maintains 1040 hazardous industrial facilities, including: 91 coal mines, 73 underground facilities for mining of raw materials, 416 facilities of open-cut mining, 88 underground construction sites, 132 facilities for refinement and enrichment of resources and 240 other hazardous industrial facilities on the contract basis.

The list of mine rescue equipment for mitigation of emergency situation on maintained facilities is described by the “Chart of minimal equipment of the PMRD”. In accordance with this document, the units of the PMRD of the Ministry of Emergencies of Russia have at their disposal: breathing apparatuses (respirators) for operations in irrespirable conditions; artificial pulmonary ventilation apparatuses and first aid equipment for injured and evacuation to the surface; instruments for indication of composition of air in the main and other parameters in the emergency mine; thermal protection suits, communication and signal equipment for management of efforts in emergency mine, including in irrespirable environment; equipment and technical means for fire fighting and construction of isolating structures; means for inertization of underground air (nitrogen units and inert gas generators), rescue and recovery equipment (hereinafter RRE) and etc.

Considering the sizes of mines that are prone for gas pollution, only the self-contained breathing apparatuses of R-30 type, which provides breathing for 4 hours, are used. R-34 respirator (which provides breathing for 2 hours) is used as an auxiliary apparatus. The Panorama-Nova full-face masks, which allow speaking in irrespirable environment, are used in combination with breathing apparatuses.

GS-10 and GS-11 pulmonary ventilation apparatuses are used to render aid to the injured in a mine.

The underground air of emergency sections of a mine are analyzed by MX-2000, MX-2100, MO2 modern electronic devices that can automatically control the composition of gas mixture and warn the carried by the sound signal.

UE-1M unit is used to carry out remote control and for quantitative and qualitative composition of underground air on a distance of 1 km. The analysis of the underground air in check-test laboratories is carried out by the Krystall-2000 and Krystall-5000 chromatographs, and Gazokhrom, OOG-2, Poisk-2, Sigma and other devices.

During the mine rescue operations the employees of the units of the PMRD determine the optimal ventilatory regime and analysis of the air coursing by using of the special software. The metering of amount of air in a mine is conducted by APR-2 modern digital anemometers.

For mine rescue operations in high temperature conditions Don and PTK-80 outfits are used as standard heat protection suits.

The PMRD uses Ugolyok wire communication system with maximum range of 5 kilometers and Kvarts wireless communication system with maximum range of 8 kilometers if conductors are used, to provide communication between the Command Post, underground and surface bases.

The PMRD has firefighting equipment for mitigation of fires at its disposal, such as: fire-hoses, fire nozzles, couplers, water sprayers (VVR-1, MVR); water screen devices, firefighting lances, unique devices for connection of fire hoses to already existing ones (GPP, GP-3) and special SShU-22 drills.

The firefighting with foam is carried out with the use of foam generators, such as: GPS-600; GPS-1200; UIP; PEK; PSh, Vyuga that can produce foam at a rate from 10 cubic meters per minute to 1,000 cubic meters per minute.

Powder based fire suppression equipment is also used, such as OPSh-100, PPU, MPPU, Vikhr and Vikhr-T systems.

The inert gas generators based on aircraft engines (MGT-250, GIG-1500), cryogenic nitrogen units (AGU-8, PGKhKA-1.0-0.9/1.6), membrane units that generate nitrogen directly from the air (MV-0,9) are also used for fire suppression. These units generate nitrogen or inert gases with 1% concentration of oxygen at a rate starting from 100 cubic meter per hour up to 1,500 cubic meter per hour.

Monolit, Temp, PBN-15 and other units are used fast for construction of blast proof plaster bulkheads. These units allow pumping in astringents at a distance of 300 meters at a rate of 15 cubic meters per hour.

Units of the PMRD use Enerpac, Sprut and Holmatro rescue and recovery instruments to render aid to the injured in case of face fall.

The fire suppression equipment, heat protection suits, nitrogen units, inert gas generators, RRE equipment and other gear is transported by specialized vehicles.

The ERMB uses reanimobiles which are equipped to carry out full complex of resuscitation activities of the injured on the way to the medical institution.

New KDV-30 booster compressor units, Junior three-stage compressors and Nardi Atlantik E-100 four-stage compressors, new modern VM 25, Gnom 1 gas analyzers for detection of methane concentration and Drager Xam-7000 gas analyzers, Gazokhrom-2000 and Krystall-2000 analytical laboratories; Game Finder Life 6 thermal viewers, toolkits for mitigation of oil spills, rescue and recovery winches for descending and ascending of people and cargo through vertical mines of ASU-1 type were introduced into operation.

Research efforts and development activity in the matter of mine rescuing and protection of hazardous industrial facilities continue along with supply of procurement of new equipment.

As a result of research and development activity the portable transceiver was developed in 2013 through, which a mine rescuer can send urgent data in underground conditions of mines. This transceiver uses medium wave mobile radio communication.

On a full-scale test it was determined that this device is capable to transmit a signal in a mine on a distance of 6,100 meters if the ground loop was constructed. The signal distance through the rocks can be transmitted to a distance of 1,200 meters.

Currently, this type of mine rescue communication is being tested under different conditions in ore and coal mines, underground construction facilities carried out by the PMRD of the Emergencies Ministry of Russia to determine if that device to be supplied to the PMRD units.

The development of the mine rescue maintenance is linked to the refinement training for the miners and mine rescuers to prevent and mitigate emergency situations, as well as development of the institution of non-staff volunteer mine rescuers from among the employees of mining facilities.

For that purpose, the facilities of the Federal State Public Institutions The National Mine Rescue Center are being built in Novokuznetsk. The construction preparedness had been provided in 2015 to enter into commission one of seven facilities. The academic building includes several lecture halls, computer classrooms, apparatus rooms, practice halls, medical center, specialized complex for VR training. Additionally, the outbuilding was equipped with the command center with videoconference capabilities for organizing of data analysis center for management of large scale and adverse emergencies with research and development support of taken decisions.