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METAL/NONMETAL MINE FATALITY - On February 15, 1999, a 28-year-old miner with 3 years mining experience was fatally injured at an underground gold mine. The victim and two coworkers had connected a high pressure flexible hose to a metal air line. After installing the coupling, they noticed it was misaligned and loosened the coupling to straighten it when it came apart, allowing the hose to violently whip.

Best Practices

  • Maintenance or repair should not be performed on air powered equipment until the system is relieved of pressure.

  • Safety chains or other devices should be installed at all high pressure air hose line connections where a connection failure would create a hazard.
  • This is the eighth fatality reported in calendar year 1999 in the metal and nonmetal mining industries. As of this date in 1998, there were eight fatalities reported in these industries. This is the first fatality classified as Handtools in 1999. There was one Handtool fatality in the same period in 1998.

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