Best Practices: Mining for Metal or Nonmetals

Here are some best practices when mining.

On July 20, 2017, a miner was driving wedges into a block of granite in an attempt to break it loose.  A piece of granite weighing 9 tons fell and crushed the victim against the quarry floor.

This is the sixth fatality reported in 2017 in U.S. metal and nonmetal mining. As of this date in 2016, there were nine fatalities reported in metal and nonmetal mining. The July 2017 case also was the second fall of material fatality in 2017, while in 2016 only one was reported in the same period of time, according to MSHA.

In order to ensure miners are safe, here are some best practices when mining:

  • Always conduct examinations of work place to identify loose ground or unstable conditions before work begins and as changing ground conditions warrant.
  • Ensure that the person conducting the examination has the training and experience to recognize potential hazards.
  • Danger off hazardous conditions and prohibit work or travel in areas where hazards from unstable ground have not been corrected.
  • Discuss work procedures and identify all hazards associated with the work to be performed along with the methods to protect personnel.
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