First published by MSHA.
Between 2017 and 2020, three miners were fatally injured after entering confined spaces to clear material and obstructions. These confined spaces included a sand and gravel bin, a sand-filled hopper, and a cone crusher. All three miners were engulfed by falling material.
- Operators should identify and eliminate or control all hazards before miners begin work and when clearing blocked material. Miners should be trained in these practices.
- Lock-out, tag-out. Never enter a confined space until the supply and discharge equipment is locked out.
- Never lock-out using the start and stop controls. These do not disconnect power conductors.
- Assign a safety harness and lanyard to each miner who may work at material supply and discharge areas or any areas where an engulfment hazard exists. Do not use lanyards that depend on free-fall speed to lock.
- Place warning signs:
- “Fall Protection Required Here”
- “Confined Space – Engulfment Hazard” warning signs at all access points to hoppers, bins, and chutes.
McCraren Compliance offers many opportunities in safety training to help circumvent accidents. Please take a moment to visit our calendar of classes to see what we can do to help your safety measures from training to consulting.