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COAL MINE FATALITY - On Tuesday, April 15, 2003, a fatal machinery accident claimed the life of a 43-year-old continuous mining machine operator with 12 years of mining experience. The operator had completed mining in the face of No. 2 entry and was backing up the remote control continuous miner to clean up the left side of the cut. The operator was found behind the line curtain and was pinned between the left rear of the continuous mining machine and the left rib.

Photo of Accident Scene

Best Practices

  • Avoid pinch points between the rib and machinery during tramming operations.

  • Ensure everyone is in a safe location when starting and moving the equipment.

  • Avoid positioning yourself behind the line curtain while tramming machinery.

  • Ensure that persons are beyond the machine's turning radius during remote control tramming.
  • 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 11th fatality reported in calendar year 2003 in the coal mining industry. As of the accident date in 2002, there were 10 fatalities reported in the coal mining industry. This is the 1st fatality classified Machinery in 2003. At this time in 2002, there was one fatality classified as Machinery.

    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