[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Commissioners of the Township of South Fayette 7-9-1975 by Ord. No. 295. Amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- BLASTING EXPLOSIVES
- Includes dynamite, nitroglycerin, fulminates, nitro- and amido- compounds, detonators, primers, fuses, blasting caps, blasting powder and all classes of explosive used in and about blasting in coal-stripping operations, quarries, excavation, construction and similar work.
No person or persons, partner or partnership, corporation or corporations shall engage in blasting activities within the Township of South Fayette until all requirements of this chapter have been complied with. No person or persons, partner or partners, corporation or corporations shall engage in blasting in the Township of South Fayette unless they have in their continuous employ a blaster who is a holder of a blaster's license issued by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and maintained continuously in force. A photocopy or other clear reproduction of the blaster's license or licenses currently in force shall be kept continuously on file at the township offices.
Blasting or blasting activities are strictly prohibited in any part of the Township of South Fayette, except that any person or persons, partner or partnership, corporation or corporations shall make application with the Code Enforcement Officer of the Township of South Fayette, who is authorized to grant a permit in proper instances for blasting, which blasting shall be done under said Code Enforcement Officer's supervision, instructions and specifications. Application for permits shall be in writing and shall set forth the name, residence and occupation of the applicant, if a person, or, if a firm or corporation, then its name and principal place of business. The application shall be submitted by the person, firm or corporation actually engaging in the blasting operation, except that if the applicant is not the owner or lessor of the property on which the blasting activities are to be conducted, said owner or lessor shall be required to be party to the application for said blasting permit.
Applications for permits to use explosives shall state the location where explosives are to be used, the kind and quantity of explosives, the character of the work and the name of the person or persons directly in charge of blasting.
The fee for obtaining said permit from the Code Enforcement Officer in the Township of South Fayette is as adopted by resolution from time to time by the Board of Commissioners and on file in the township offices, payable in advance to the Township of South Fayette.
Where not more than 1/4 pound of dynamite or its equivalent is used, no permit is necessary.
No permit shall be issued by the Code Enforcement Officer unless the applicant submits with the application a certificate of insurance issued by an insurance company authorized to do business in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and in a form acceptable to the Township Solicitor, certifying that the applicant has, in full force and effect, a policy of public liability insurance, including a specific endorsement covering all liabilities that might arise from blasting, and providing bodily injury and wrongful death coverage of not less than $1,000,000 for each and every injury arising out of any incident and $1,000,000 for any property damage. Such certificate shall also disclose that the policy shall incorporate provisions as follows:
The Township of South Fayette shall be held harmless from all claims, actions and proceedings brought against it for injury to person or property resulting from or occasioned by such blasting operation;
It shall not be canceled, terminated or modified unless 10 days' prior written notice is given to the Township of South Fayette by registered mail addressed to the Board of Commissioners and the Code Enforcement Officer; and
The presence of an inspector or engineer on behalf of the Township of South Fayette at the site of such blasting operation shall not affect the obligation of the insurer under the policy.
No permit shall be valid unless such insurance is in full force and effect during the entire term of the permit.
Whenever the Code Enforcement Officer finds that blasting is being carried out in a dangerous or careless manner or that the person or persons in charge of the blasting operations or any employee or employees are careless or not properly acquainted with or trained in safe methods of conducting blasting operations, he shall have the authority to require that such incompetent persons be replaced with competent persons, or, in the event that such order is not obeyed, the Code Enforcement Officer shall have power to cause the discontinuance of the blasting operations involved until such time as the proper precautions and methods of conducting the blasting operations are adopted. In addition, the Code Enforcement Officer may temporarily revoke any permit heretofore issued and approved in the following instances:
Where he finds that there has been any false statement or misrepresentation as to a material fact in the application, plans or specifications on which the permit was based; or
Where he finds that the permit was issued in error and should not have been issued in accordance with the applicable law.
Upon any such revocation, the permittee shall be entitled to a hearing regarding the cause therefor at the next regular Township Meeting or at a special meeting called by the township for such purpose. After such hearing, the Code Enforcement Officer shall either reinstate the permit or make the revocation permanent.
The Code Enforcement Officer or the person designated by him shall have the power to fix a danger area around all blasting operations and to approve or disapprove the methods of conducting blasting operations and of the safeguards employed, as in his opinion the safety of the work and the location may require. In no case shall blasting be done on Sundays or between the hours of 7:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m. daily, except when otherwise specifically permitted, in writing, by the Code Enforcement Officer of the Township of South Fayette.
At least three minutes before firing a blast, the person undertaking such blasting operation shall give warning thereof by causing a competent man carrying a red flag to be stationed at a reasonable distance from the blast on all sides of the blast on any path, lane, street, road or highway or other avenue of approach capable of use by the public. None but authorized persons shall be permitted within the area protected by the signs during the blasting operations.
In all cases, signs at least 36 inches by 36 inches bearing the words "DANGER, BLASTING OPERATIONS UNDERWAY - NO RADIO TRANSMISSION" or similar language, printed in red, shall be posted on all sides of the blast at a reasonable distance from the blast. At least four such signs shall be so posted. Such posting shall occur at least by 8:00 a.m. on the day of the blast, and such signs shall be removed after the blasting operations are completed.
Except for very deep blast holes, all coal, earth or rock subject to the effects of the blast shall be covered with a heavy mattress of rope, a layer of timber secured together by a chain or other protection approved by the Code Enforcement Officer of South Fayette Township that will prevent objects from being thrown.
Blasting activities shall be so conducted that ground vibrations, airborne noise or the maximum total energy ratio measured at the nearest structure or building not owned or leased by the individual or corporation conducting the blasting does not exceed the standards established by this local law.
Ground vibrations emanating from blasting activities shall not produce a total peak particle velocity in excess of 1.92 inches per second at the location aforesaid.
The maximum total energy ratio shall not exceed 1.0 at the location aforesaid.
Allowable quantities of explosives. In the absence of approved methods of instrumentation, to restrict vibrations to the levels specified in this chapter, the quantity of explosives used in blasting shall not exceed the quantities in the following table:
A record shall be kept of every blast, showing the amount of total powder and the total number of holes, and all records shall be retained at least until the end of the calendar year next following the year in which the record is made. All such records shall be open to inspection by any authorized representative of the Township of South Fayette, and one copy of each shall be furnished to him, without charge, at his request. At least one copy of the records required by this section shall be maintained at the quarry, mine office or construction blasting site at all times. The recorded data shall include:
The number of holes;
The kind and quantity of explosives;
The kind of blasting caps and the delay interval;
The date and time of firing;
The name of the person in responsible charge of loading and firing, and the blasting permit number;
The signature of the blaster making the report; and
The name and location of quarry or construction site.
The Code Enforcement Officer may order, on his initiative and without prior consent, four recordings of the seismic and air-pressure effects of the blasting activity of any regular blasting operation within the blasting area during the course of each calendar year.
Seismograph and air-pressure readings of blasts shall be taken by a qualified person regularly or frequently employed in the business of seismograph readings and competent to qualify as an expert witness to the results.
The recorded data shall include the following:
Identification of the instrument used;
The name of the observer;
The name of the interpreter;
The distance and direction of the recording station from the area of detonation;
The type of ground at the recording station or location in the structure;
Maximum amplitudes for all components, as well as the resultant for all recorded frequencies of vibrations;
The duration of motion in excess of 0.001 inch;
The frequency of ground motion, in cycles per second;
The maximum energy ratio or particle velocity; and
A copy of the photographic records of the seismograph readings.
If any such monitoring shall disclose an apparent violation of the limits established by this chapter, the Code Enforcement Officer may require four additional recordings. All recording shall be at the expense of the corporation or person conducting the activity but under the exclusive supervision, schedule and control of the Code Enforcement Officer of the Township of South Fayette. Any additional blasts found to exceed the limits of this chapter shall occasion an additional series of four recordings.
[Amended 7-11-1988 by Ord. No. 359]
Any person who shall violate, cause or participate in any violation of any provision of this chapter or any condition, rule or regulation imposed or promulgated under the authority of this chapter shall be deemed to have committed an offense.
Every violation of any provision in this chapter or any condition, rule or regulation imposed or promulgated under the authority of this chapter shall be a separate and distinct offense, and in the case of a continuing violation, every day's continuance thereof shall be deemed a separate and distinct offense. A conviction of any such violation shall be punishable by a fine not to exceed $1,000 for each violation, plus costs of prosecution for each offense, and, in default of payment of such fine and costs, to imprisonment in the county jail for a term not exceeding 30 days.
The Code Enforcement Officer shall have the authority to waive any of the requirements of this chapter when such waiver is requested in writing and when the granting of the waiver, in his opinion, would not be detrimental to the general health, welfare and safety of the residents of the Township of South Fayette.