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COAL MINE FATALITY - On Wednesday, August 19, 1998, a 38-year-old truck driver, employed by an independent contracting firm, was operating a large over-the-road truck. He was hauling coal from a surface mine to a preparation plant. As the experienced truck driver was driving downhill on an 11 percent grade, the loaded truck ran up onto the roadway berm and overturned. The driver was either thrown from or jumped from the truck, and was crushed beneath it. The truck's brakes were found to be ineffective and the load on the truck exceeded the truck's safe capacity.

  • Make truck examinations and maintenance a high priority.

  • Ensure that adequate brakes are provided, properly maintained and free of oil or grease.

  • Maintain loads within the safe hauling capacity of the truck.

  • Truck drivers should always wear seat belts and remain in the cab even when a crash is imminent. Their chances of survival are much greater when they are strapped inside the cab.
  • This is the 20th fatality reported in calendar year 1998 in the coal mining industry. As of this date in 1997, there were 22 fatalities. This is the sixth fatality classified as POWERED HAULAGE in 1998.

    For more information:
    Fatal Alert Bulletin Icon MSHA's Fatal Accident Investigation Report [FTL98C20]