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METAL/NONMETAL MINE FATALITY - On March 23, 2007, a 44 year-old tramway maintenance man, with 26 years mining experience, was fatally injured at an industrial sand operation. A maintenance crew was adjusting a cable for an aerial tram. A tension jack was being used to tighten the cable when the cable anchorage point failed. The victim was in a man basket, looking down the cable line, and was struck by the tension jack or cable. A co-worker was also injured.

Photo Showing Accident Scene Described in Paragraph Above

Best Practices
  • Identify inspection criteria and maintenance procedures for carriers (including loading and unloading mechanisms), ropes and supports, and brakes according to the recommendations of the manufacturer.
  • Identify potential hazards for each step of the task, establish written procedures, and train persons conducting the task of aligning cable lines.
  • Ensure that competent persons address hazards associated with and the uncontrolled release of stored energy.
  • Ensure that persons are not positioned within the recoil zone of tensioned cables.
  • When using hydraulic systems, ensure that the maximum allowed pressures and the settings of the relief valves are established by a qualified individual.
  • Before any work is performed on a tension linkage assemblage, ensure that all connection points of the linkage assemblies have been examined for signs of excessive deformation, signs of distress such as cracking, distortion of holes, warping, out of plan lateral movements.
  • 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 4th fatality reported in calendar year 2007 in the metal and nonmetal mining industries. As of this date in 2006, there were three fatalities reported in these industries. This is the 1st Machinery fatality in 2007. There were two Machinery fatalities in the same period in 2006.

    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