‘Gold Rush’: The ‘Strict’ Regulations of Some Worksites Leave Fans Divided

by Jon D. B.

When a show’s as great as Gold Rush, it attracts the right kind of fans that ask the right kind of questions. Take this one, for example:

“Why does Fred’s wife care so much about harnessing (and other regulations) when no other operation does it (at least to the extent she does)?” asks u/EzW over on the active Reddit Gold Rush board. “Are they all screwed if MSHA shows up or is she just interpreting the rules too strictly? I’ve seen Parker’s crew walk up the conveyor without harnesses and work around the machine while it’s running…”

Yeah… That’s absolutely accurate. So what gives? What could result in such a massive difference in safety regulations?

Redditor DAS_FUN_POLICE offers a sensible answer, which has been voted as the top response: “It’s possible that the regulations may be more strict in the US than Canada,” they say. “I seem to remember the Hoffman’s having more safety barriers and harnesses when they were in Oregon and Colorado.”

As it turns out, the user is partially correct. Well, according to other Gold Rush fans, at least.

“It’s this. It’s all based on where they are,” agrees u/bottledwater91. Redditor rawdeturf agrees, offering up a more solid explanation that certainly sounds like it comes from personal experience.

“Yup it’s the location. If you’ve ever dealt with OSHA directly, it’s a vacation compared to MHSA. They want everything done a certain way and paperwork has to be in order. Rightfully so because the industry was one of the deadliest not that long ago,” they share.

It is u/Stromm, however, that comes in with the full works – answering any and all questions any Gold Rush fan may have on the matter.

‘Gold Rush’ Fan Lays Down Hard OSHA & MSHA Facts

“In the US, OSHA & MSHA both apply to mines. Typically, MSHA is more involved. But OSHA will make unannounced visits the same as MSHA,” clarifies Stromm. “I suspect one thing that significantly affects concern is how long it can take for one of the agencies to get eyes-on an operation.”

The Redditor adds that in both Alaska and Canada, “distances from property boarders are much greater. So the crew working will have more warning “someone is coming”. They may not know it’s the Fed, but even a 10 minute alert can give them time to put on PPE.”

Makes sense. And if we’re to take the word of any Gold Rush fan right now, it’d be Stromm:

“Having worked at a steel plant in Ohio (IT, but man I was out in the danger zones like the union guys were), I can tell you “SHA’s” are sneaky,” he says. “One example is they’ll rent a contract helicopter, hang long range cameras under it, even air sniffers and then spy from a couple miles away. At this site, they loved to make passes two miles away and video record as much as they could…”

According to Stromm, “Even those “minor” infractions legally allow for an immediate and greater depth safety check.”

Now, Gold Rush fans, we know!