Job Code Pay Scale Group Pay Scale Type Bargaining Unit Civil Service or Non-Civil Service Last Executive Board Change Executive Board Change History
71570 07 ST G1 C 999-99 01/07/2021
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01/27/2001 71570


DEFINITION: This is technical work in regulating the purchase, storage, handling and use of explosives in an assigned geographical area of the Commonwealth.

Employees in this class perform a variety of inspection, investigation and enforcement activities involving the Commonwealth's blasting and explosives program. Work involves conducting inspections at coal and non-coal surface mines to determine compliance with Commonwealth laws and regulations, conducting investigations into public complaints involving the use of explosives, preparing technical reports, initiating enforcement activities to correct violations, and monitoring other applications of explosives, including trenching and construction sites, demolition sites and seismic surveys. Work also involves reviewing and recommending appropriate action on requests for blast plan approval and applications for blasting activity permits, and evaluating the sitting and construction of magazines. An important aspect of the work involves the discretionary authority to order the evacuation of a blast site and the cessation of blasting operations if employees or the public are threatened with physical danger. Work is assigned in the form of program objectives and priorities, and the employees exercise considerable freedom in scheduling and performing the work, although consultation with district and central office staff may be held on unusual or difficult technical or enforcement problems. Work is reviewed by a professional supervisor through reports and meetings for adherence to established procedures,
completeness, and overall quality.

EXAMPLES OF WORK: Conducts inspections of coal and non-coal surface mines, building and highway construction sites, trench excavations, magazines, seismic surveys, and sporting black powder wholesalers and retailers to determine compliance with blasting and explosives rules and regulations.

Investigates complaints involving the improper use of explosives and recommends solutions to resolve the complaints.

Conducts studies to determine if blasting has caused structural damage to property, including evaluating structure conditions and performing structure response analyses and ground vibration analyses, and prepares technical reports to document the findings and conclusions of the studies.

Provides advice and recommendations on blasting operations to district office staff, licensed blasters, mine operators, and other state agencies.

Participates in conducting training programs for blasting license applicants.

Investigates accidents involving explosive usage to determine causes and conditions and suggests preventative measures for avoiding similar accidents.

Reviews blast plans and applications for blasting activity permits, and recommends their approval, with or without modifications, or denial.

Measures and documents ground vibration and air overpressure produced from blasting and relates this information to national standards in determining damage potential.

Responds to orphan explosives incidents and coordinates the transportation, handling and disposal of such explosives, or personally handles, transports and disposes of such explosives, including disposal by detonation or burning.

Prepares and submits reports on inspections, complaints and investigations.

Serves as an expert witness in legal proceedings on the purchase, storage, handling and use of explosives.

Performs related work as required.

REQUIRED KNOWLEDGES, SKILLS, AND ABILITIES: Knowledge of the properties, hazards, and detonation techniques of explosives.

Knowledge of the Commonwealth's laws, rules, regulations, and standards governing the purchase, storage, handling and use of explosives.

Knowledge of surface mining techniques and operations.

Knowledge of safety precautions involved in mining, construction, and other activities requiring the use of explosives.

Skill in operating and maintaining seismic monitors and interpreting seismic data.

Ability to conduct inspections and investigations to ensure compliance with the blasting and explosives program.

Ability to detect hazardous conditions and practices in all types of explosives operations and to recommend specific measures to mitigate the hazards.

Ability to express ideas clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing.

Ability to prepare technical reports documenting the findings of blasting studies.

Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with coworkers, explosives users and distributors, and the public.

Ability to exhibit sufficient physical strength and stamina to permit walking long distances over rough terrain under varying climatic conditions.

MINIMUM EXPERIENCE AND TRAINING: A bachelor's degree in engineering or physical sciences;


Four years of experience in the handling and use of explosives, including a minimum of two years as a lead blaster, blasting foreman or blasting operations supervisor.

NECESSARY SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: Possession of a Class A "General" blaster's license issued by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Possession of a valid Pennsylvania commercial driver's license with hazardous materials (H) endorsement.