MSHA – Mine Fatality #17

Original article published by MSHA

MINE FATALITY – On August 4, 2022, a mine manager died while performing maintenance on a bulldozer.  While kneeling on the bulldozer’s track, the victim accidentally engaged the lever that put the bulldozer in reverse.  The bulldozer track moved the victim to the rear of the bulldozer where he was run over.

Accident scene where a mine manager died while performing maintenance on a bulldozer.
Photo property of MSHA
Best Practices:
  • Operators should train miners on safe maintenance procedures:
  • turn off the engine
  • block equipment against motion
  • Operators should make sure miners are in a safe location in relation to machine parts that can move.
Additional Information:

This is the 17th fatality reported in 2022, and the seventh classified as “Machinery.”


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.

MSHA – Mine Fatality #21

Original article published by MSHA

MINE FATALITY – On September 9, 2022, a dredge operator drowned while working in a dredge pond.

Accidemt scene where a dredge operator drowned while working in a dredge pond
Photo property of MSHA
Best Practices:
  • Make sure a competent person conducts workplace examinations before miners begin work to identify conditions that may adversely affect safety.
  • Make sure miners wear life jackets or belts where there is danger of falling into water.
  • Make sure miners maintain communication when working alone.
Additional Information:

This is the 21st fatality reported in 2022, and the second classified as “Drowning.”


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.

MSHA – Mine Fatality #18

First published by MSHA

MINE FATALITY – On August 17, 2022, a general inside laborer died when he was caught between a supply car and its coupler.  The victim was sitting on the supply car which was coupled to a locomotive parked in a track spur.  The locomotive was struck by another locomotive pulling three loaded cars into the mine.  The impact knocked the victim off the supply car, killing him.

Accident scene where a general inside laborer died when he was caught between a supply car and its coupler.  The victim was sitting on the supply car which was coupled to a locomotive parked in a track spur. 
Photo property of MSHA
Best Practices:
  • Assure track switches are in the proper position for your direction of travel and the latches are in contact with the rail.
  • Make sure miners are in a safe location away from equipment parked in a track spur when other equipment is passing along the main rail line.
  • Make sure miners communicate their location and intended movements with the dispatcher.  Repeat the switch alignment back to the dispatcher, where applicable.
Additional Information:

This is the 18th fatality reported in 2022, and the fourth classified as “Powered Haulage.”


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.

MSHA – Mine Fatality #20

First published by MSHA

MINE FATALITY – On September 1, 2022, a roof bolter was electrocuted when he contacted a metal hook that became energized after it penetrated the 480-volt cable that supplied electrical power to a roof bolting machine.

Accident scene where a roof bolter was electrocuted when he contacted a metal hook that became energized after it penetrated the 480-volt cable that supplied electrical power to a roof bolting machine.
Photo property of MSHA
Best Practices:
  • Make sure miners use suitable, non-conductive ropes with appropriate breaking strengths when pulling or handling electrical cables.  Never attach conductive parts to the non-conductive rope, such as metallic hooks.
  • Make sure miners use proper Personal Protective Equipment when handling cables.
  • Train miners to examine the work area and identify potentially hazardous conditions.
Additional Information:

This is the 20th fatality reported in 2022, and the first classified as “Electrical.”


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.

MSHA – Mine Fatality #19

First published by MSHA

MINE FATALITY – On August 23, 2022, a contract mechanic received fatal injuries while performing maintenance on the bucket (dipper) of an electric rope shovel.  A plastic block, used to prop open the dipper door, dislodged causing the dipper door to close and pin the victim against the back edge of the dipper.

Accident scene where a contract mechanic received fatal injuries while performing maintenance on the bucket (dipper) of an electric rope shovel.
Photo property of MSHA
Best Practices:
  • Make sure miners are positioned in a safe location and away from potential pinch point areas.
  • Make sure miners securely block equipment against motion before beginning maintenance or repairs.
  • Assure blocking material is substantial and installed correctly to support and stabilize the load.
  • Make sure miners conduct repairs according to manufacturer’s recommendations.
Additional Information:

This is the 19th fatality reported in 2022, and the eigth classified as “Machinery.”


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.

MSHA – Fatality #16

First published by MSHA

MINE FATALITY – On July 21, 2022, a miner received fatal injuries when his right arm became entangled in an auger (screw) conveyor.

Accident scene where a miner received fatal injuries when his right arm became entangled in an auger (screw) conveyor. 
Photo property of MSHA
Best Practices: 
  • Secure all conveyor covers in place during normal operation.  Keep tools, clothing, and body parts away from moving conveyors.
  • De-energize, lock out, tag out, and block machinery against hazardous motion before performing repairs or maintenance.  Never perform work on a moving conveyor.
  • Examine work areas and equipment.  Report defects to miners and assure defects are corrected and recorded.  Test emergency shut-off devices frequently.

This is the 16th fatality reported in 2022, and the sixth classified as “Machinery.”

Additional Information:

The information provided in this notice is based on preliminary data only and does not represent final determinations regarding the nature of the incident or conclusions regarding the cause of the fatality.


McCraren Compliance assists employers in protecting their workers, starting with a comprehensive Work-site Analysis, Hazard Prevention, Controls, and Safety & Health Training.

Please contact us today at 888-758-4757 to learn how we can provide mine safety training and consulting for your business.

Mine workers and breathing problems

First published by Safety+Health an NSC publication

East Lansing, MI — A recent study of workers at sand, gravel and stone mines in Michigan found a higher number of doctor visits for shortness of breath compared with workers in other production industries.

Researchers at Michigan State University examined lung disease as well as exposure to silica, various allergens and other irritants among more than 1,200 surface mine workers from around the state. They asked the workers, who each had at least 15 years of experience, to complete a questionnaire and provided them with free chest X-rays and breathing tests.

Results showed “an increased prevalence of seeing a doctor for shortness of breath, possible work-related asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease,” according to an MSU press release. In the release, lead study author Hailey TenHarmsel, a research assistant in the MSU College of Human Medicine, said the nature of surface mining leaves workers vulnerable to various exposure risks.

Doug Needham is executive director of the Michigan Aggregates Association, which represents 85% of aggregate mining operators in Michigan. “We are making sure the health and safety of the work itself and companies doing air monitoring aren’t exposed to anything,” Needham said. “We put in air monitors on their chest throughout a normal eight-hour day, and at the end of the day, they turn them in and get tested to ensure they weren’t exposed to any limits that will cause them harm.”

The study was published online in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.


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.

Know the Warning Signs of Heat-Related Illness on Mining Sites

First published by MSHA

Photo property of USDOL

Mining is a tough job, and many mine and mill workers are exposed to hot working conditions, especially during the summer months. Mining at hot work sites is challenging and can turn dangerous without the proper precautions. Workers nationwide face similar challenges at hot work sites. During Extreme Heat Month, we aim to provide information and resources to prevent heat-related illnesses at work sites.

A “hot” work site is defined by several factors, including high air temperatures, high surface temperatures, high humidity and low air movement. Mine operators and owners need to ensure workers are properly trained and acclimatized so work sites remain safe.

All workers – and supervisors in particular – need to recognize the conditions of a “hot” job and should be provided heat-stress training on worker risk, prevention, symptoms, monitoring, treatment and personal protective equipment. The objective should always be to keep workers’ body core temperatures from rising above 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius).

These tips can help prevent dangerous – or even DEADLY– heat-related symptoms: 
  • Provide a work-rest regimen – acclimatization over an initial one- to two-week period, then frequent breaks and reasonably short work periods.

  • Pace tasks to avoid exhaustion.

  • Perform heavy tasks in cooler areas or at cooler times.

  • Rotate personnel on hot jobs.

  • Provide readily accessible cooler rest areas – 50 to 60 F (10 to 15 C).

  • Provide cool drinking water 50 to 60 F (10 to 15 C) near workers at all times.

  • Encourage or require all workers to drink a cup of water every 15 to 20 minutes.

  •  Avoid drinks with caffeine, alcohol and large amounts of sugar.

  • Drink lightly salted water (one level tablespoon of salt per 15 quarts of water for general use). See treatments for certain disorders for an alternate mix of salt and water.

  • Caution against drinking extreme amounts of water; generally no more than 12 quarts over a 24-hour period.

  • Provide sun blockers and proper protective clothing for individuals working in the sun.

If a worker does show signs of heat stress:  

DO:

  • Remove the victim from the heat.

  • Apply cool wet cloths.

  • Fan the victim but STOP if goose bumps or shivers develop.

  • Give water if victim is conscious.

  • Seek medical attention if there’s no improvement.

DON’T:

  • Give any stimulant, alcohol or cigarettes.

  • Apply ice directly to the skin.

  • Allow the victim to become so cold that shivering starts.

  • Leave the victim alone.

Help keep miners and all workers safe this summer by following these simple recommendations. Remember that owners, operators and supervisors are responsible for keeping workers safe and understanding how to prevent heat illness and injury.

You can find additional resources here:

OSHA: Heat Illness Prevention

MSHA: Heat Stress

MSHA: Heat Stress – Health Hazard Card


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.

MSHA – Fatality #14

First published by MSHA

MINE FATALITY – On June 20, 2022, a contract driller was working outside of his drill when he fell from the top of a highwall.

Accident scene where a contract driller was working outside of his drill when he fell from the top of a highwall.
Photo property of MSHA
Best Practices: 
  • Wear fall protection when there is a danger of falling.  Assure fall protection has a suitable fall arrest and a secure anchorage system.
  • Train miners to properly use their personal protective equipment and to recognize potential hazards from falls and to safely perform tasks.
  • Provide communication systems when assigning miners to work alone.
Additional Information:

This is the 14th fatality reported in 2022, and the second classified as “Slip or Fall of Person.”


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.

Just a few minutes can prevent accidents and fatalities at mines

First published by MSHA
Take Time Save Lives sticker Seal
Photo property of MSHA

The top priority at MSHA is keeping miners safe. This year we have seen an increase in fatalities and injuries, many of which could have been prevented with proper training and attention to tasks. It is up to mine operators to ensure that miners are fully trained and able to take time to follow best safety practices that can prevent deadly accidents.

To assist mine operators, MSHA has resources available to help train even seasoned miners. At the links below, you will find:

And we will continue to add more resources. If there is something you need that is not available, please let us know using the link on the safety page. We hope you’ll help us get the word out to Take Time, Save Lives, and make sure every miner comes home safe at the end of each shift.

Powered haulage safety

Surface mining vehicles can be several stories tall and are capable of destroying smaller vehicles that cannot be seen by the operator. Traffic controls, training, and avoiding distractions are key to enhancing safety. Collision warning and avoidance systems can also help.

MSHA engineers estimate that three to four miners’ lives could be saved each year if adequate seat belts were provided and worn. Warning systems such as chimes can remind drivers to buckle up, while interlock systems can prevent the vehicle from moving if the belt is unbuckled.

Belt conveyors and their components pose serious risks to miners working on or around them. It’s important to install adequate guarding to prevent contact, provide and use crossovers and cross unders, and lock out energy sources and block motion whenever performing maintenance.

Pillar Collapse Prevention

MSHA has resources available to raise awareness and avoid these accidents at underground mines, particularly limestone mines, that can result in areas where benching has occurred.  Please use resources at this link, including upcoming seminars, papers, presentations and videos, to help you avoid the dangers of pillar collapses.

Fire Suppression Guidance

Adequate task training must be performed so equipment operators and mechanics will be able to maintain equipment, respond correctly to alarms, use fire suppression systems properly, and safely dismount equipment in an emergency.  Mine operators should provide refresher training as needed.

COVID-19


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.