MSHA confirms Tenth Fatality on 25 July 2017 – Final report

Andrew J. Oxenrider, a 28-year-old equipment operator was killed while operating a Caterpillar D9L bulldozer on a refuse bank at the Oak Hill P – 47 on 25 July 2017, according to the tenth fatality report by the Mine Safety and Health Administration. The accident occurred when the victim was working alone and run over by a bulldozer.

Investigators stated that they believe Oxenrider exited the bulldozer onto the slope of the refuse bank and into its push path near the edges of the refuse bank.

The bulldozer moved downhill after the victim exited it as the manufacturers parking procedure was not followed, positioning the victim between the track and blade. The bulldozer travelled over the edge of the refuse pile and stopped at the bottom of the embankment. There were not witnesses to accident.

Seth Huey, foreman, arrived at the screening pad area and found the bulldozer positioned blade first into the ground at the bottom of the refuse bank. He saw Oxenrider lying on the ground near the edge of the bank.

Huey called Frank Derrick, general manager, and told him to come right away and then Riccardo Muntone, vice president of Safety and Compliance. Derrick arrived at the accident scene and called 9:11 at 9:42 a.m. and then travelled to the entrance gate to wait for emergency services.

Schuylkill Emergency Medical Services (EMS) arrived at 10:09 a.m. and a front-end loader was used to open a road for the EMS to travel to the scene in an all-terrain vehicle.  After EMS evaluated Oxenrider, Andrew Szczyglak, Schuylkill county deputy coroner, arrived and pronounced him dead at the scene at 11:05 a.m.

This fatal accident occurred because the manufacturer’s braking procedure was not followed. In addition, the mine operator did not provide adequate task training to the victim in accordance with its approved training plan, which included training on the safe operating procedures outlined in the CAT D9L operator’s manual for parking the bulldozer on a grade. Also, the mine operator did not maintain the braking system of the bulldozer in a safe operating condition.

More information is available here.


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