MSHA highwall fatality report

On July 25, 2016, a 59 year old excavator operator, with 17 years of experience, was killed at a limestone quarry, the MSHA reports.

The cab of the victim’s excavator was struck by falling material from the highwall

Prior to the accident, the victim was loading shot rock into haul trucks. While waiting for the haul trucks to return, the victim was separating out over sized rocks when the cab of his excavator was struck by falling material from the highwall.

Best Practices

  • Operate excavators with the cab perpendicular to, and swinging away from, the highwall
  • Examine highwalls from as many perspectives as possible (bottom, sides, and top/crest) while maintaining the safety of the examiner(s). Look for signs of cracking or other geologic discontinuities
  • Maintain access to the top of highwalls so that thorough examinations can be conducted
  • Perform supplemental examinations of highwalls, banks, benches, and sloping terrain in the working area during and following inclement weather
  • Immediately remove all personnel exposed to hazardous ground conditions, barricade, and/or post signs to prevent entry, and promptly correct unsafe conditions
  • Use mining methods that ensure highwall stability and safe working conditions
  • Look, Listen and Evaluate your highwall and pit conditions daily, especially after each rain, freeze, or thaw
  • Establish and discuss safe work procedures for working near highwalls.  Be your own examiner and find hazards before they find you
  • Refer to PIB P10-09 ‘Safety Precautions for Operating Rubber Tired and Track-Mounted Excavators’ for additional information regarding hazards related to operating excavators at surface mines.

This is the 10th fatal reported in calendar year 2016 in metal and nonmetal mining. As of this date in 2015, there were 12 fatalities reported in metal and nonmetal mining.

This is the 1st fatality classified as fall of highwall in 2016.

There were no fall of highwall accident classification fatalities in the same period in 2015.

(Visited 489 times, 1 visits today)

Get involved


As a member of this site you will be able to receive aggregates news relating only to those categories that are most relevant to you, submit job listings for FREE, post questions in the Q&A, and more.

Register Now

Feature your company

The Feature Your Company listing is your custom-made (by us) profile page that allows you to add any of the following content: text, videos, links, images. The page will also be listed on the Featured Company landing page. Over 560 unique aggregates users visit the site per day! Complete the enquiry form now to contact us.

Contact us


Are you looking for an aggregate related job? Click here to see our jobs listing supplied by industry experts United Employment.

See Jobs


Reach thousands of budget holders and decision makers by promoting your company on the longest established aggregate website in the US & Canada. Or advertise in our emails which are sent to opted-in subscribers according to their chosen categories. All advertising will display correctly on tablets and mobiles as this site is responsive.