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COAL MINE FATALITY - On Tuesday, May 22, 2001, a 54-year old repairman, with 21 years mining experience, was seriously injured in a roof fall accident. The victim was in the process of servicing the continuous mining machine which was located in the #5 entry, just outby the last open crosscut. The victim, was positioned in front of and over the head of the continuous mining machine, filling the machine with gear oil, when a section of roof fell out between the previously installed roof bolts. The section of roof measured 11 feet long by 3 feet wide and up to 9 inches in thickness. The falling roof material struck the victim and forced him into the continuous mining machine, causing serous crushing injuries the his head. The victim died, as a result of these injuries, on May 23, 2001.

 Drawing Depicting Roof Fall

Best Practices

  • Always examine the roof in your work area prior to doing any work.

  • Always be alert of changing roof conditions.

  • Always follow the approved roof control plan.
  • More Information E-mail Suggestion for Accident Prevention Program Submit your own suggestion for a remedy to prevent this type of accident in the future.
    Please specify if you wish your submission to be anonymous or whether your name may be used. Please include the year of the fatality and the fatality number.

    This is the 8th fatal accident, reported in calendar year 2001, in the coal mining industry. As of this date in 2000, there were thirteen fatalities reported in the coal mining industry. This is the third fatal accident, classified as roof fall, reported in the coal mining industry in 2001. At this time in 2000, there were no fatal accidents, classified as roof fall, in the coal mining industry.

    The information provided in this notice is based on preliminary data ONLY and does not represent final determinations regarding the nature of the incident or conclusions regarding the cause of the fatality.

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