Coal Mining Risk Assessment (CMRA)

Coal Mining Risk Assessment (CMRA)

The Coal Authority is a statutory consultee to all planning applications submitted for proposed developments within all past, present and future coal mining areas across the UK. In response to specific guidance issued by the Coal Authority, many Local Planning Authorities now require a Coal Mining Risk Assessment (CMRA) to be carried out. Coal Mining Risk Assessments are required for all sites where development is proposed in areas that the Coal Authority has defined as being a “Development High Risk Area”. In order for a planning application to be fully validated for consideration by the Local Planning Authority, Coal Mining Risk Assessments  have to be included with each and every application submitted within such Development High Risk Areas.
Developers can check whether their site falls within a Development High Risk Area (and therefore requires a Coal Mining Risk Assessment) using the free interactive Coal Authority mapping here.

Guidance prepared by the Coal Authority recommends that the Coal Mining Risk Assessment should contain the following information:

1. Site Specific Coal Mining Information (including past/present/future underground mining, shallow coal workings, mine entries, mine gas, within an area which has a current licence to extract coal, geological features, any recorded surface hazards, or within a former or present surface (old opencast) area).

2. Identify what risks the coal mining issues, including cumulative effects, pose to the proposed development.

3. Identify how coal mining issues have influenced the proposed development and whether any changes or other mitigation measures are required to manage those issues and/or whether any changes have been incorporated into the development.

The Coal Authority require all Coal Mining Risk Assessments to be prepared by suitably qualified ‘competent’ persons with appropriate qualifications and experience. Mining is at the heart of our Wardell Armstrong business and all of our Coal Mining Risk Assessments are prepared on a fixed fee basis by a team of highly experienced Engineers, Geologists and Surveyors.

As a matter of routine, we provide expert advice on mining risk to developers, land owners, regulators, insurance companies and local authorities and are able to integrate our broad range of expertise to ensure that our Clients always benefit from the most appropriate solution, based on pragmatic and cost effective advice.

We are also able to provide mining risk assessments to help developers and planners understand and have regard to the risks presented by all forms of mining (not just coal). We are pleased to discuss how this approach may be of benefit to managing project risks effectively.


Chris Smith Chris Smith
Technical Director
+44 (0)1782 276700
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James Carter James Carter
Senior Engineering Geologist
+44 (0)1782 276700
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