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METAL/NONMETAL MINE FATALITY - On September 10, 2002, a 58 year-old contract drill operator with 15 years drilling experience was fatally injured at a crushed stone operation. The victim had positioned the truck-mounted chassis drill, set the jacks and raised the truck chassis off the ground. He was raising the drill mast into position when a previously damaged jack foot connection may have allowed the "ball end" to suddenly drop into the receiving socket. This caused the drill to become unstable, tip over and crush the operator inside the operator's cab.

Photo of Accident Scene

Best Practices

  • Ensure pre-operational checks are conducted and identified needs for maintenance are properly addressed.

  • Establish procedures that ensure jack components are locking in position properly and the unit is level before positioning mast.

  • Use adequate cribbing to prevent the jacks from sinking into the ground.

  • Know the limitations of your drill and follow the procedures in the operators manual.
  • 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 25th fatality reported in calendar year 2002 in the metal and nonmetal mining industries. As of this date in 2001, there were 20 fatalities reported in these industries. This is the ninth fatality classified as Machinery in 2002. There was one Machinery fatalities in the same period in 2001.

    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