MSHA COAL MINE FATALITY – Worker struck and pinned to machine

On Thursday, July 29, 2010, at approximately 11:55 a.m., the left side integral roof bolter operator on a continuous mining machine was fatally injured. The victim was struck with a portion of rib measuring approximately 276 inches long by 55 inches high and up to 16 inches thick. The accident occurred while cutting an overcast. The victim had installed one test bolt and was near the left rear bumper of the machine, when the accident occurred. The rock in the left rib sheared off pinning, the victim against the machine.

Best Practices
Develop a plan for cutting overcasts and train miners in the procedures and precautions.
Examine the roof and ribs frequently while working.
Take down or support any loose ribs or roof adequately before working or traveling in the affected area.
Be aware of changing roof and rib conditions, especially when working between the ribs and equipment.
Unless necessary, do not position yourself between any piece of machinery and the rib.
Where the mining process allows, remain within the confines of protective devices such as cabs, canopies and rib protectors whenever possible.
Install additional rib support prior to mining in areas where the roof or floor is cut above or below the coal seam, especially overcasts, loading points, etc.


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