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COAL MINE FATALITY - On Monday, July 11, 2011 a 26-year-old supply motor operator, with 6 years 1 month of mining experience, was killed while transporting materials using a diesel powered 15-ton locomotive. When the locomotive approached a low, steel, over-cast beam, the victim placed his head outside of the operator's compartment and was struck by the steel beam and the locomotive's canopy.

Photo of Accident Scene

Best Practices
  • Keep all body parts within the operator's compartment while the equipment is in motion.
  • Ensure that all track mounted equipment has adequate clearance throughout mine.
  • Always look in the direction of equipment movement and exercise caution in low clearance work areas.
  • Conduct proper workplace and travelway examinations to identify and mitigate the hazards presented by low clearances.
  • Install warning signs that tell operators to reduce speed in low clearance areas.

  • 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 tenth fatality reported during calendar year 2011 in the coal mining industry. This is the third fatality classified as a Powered Haulage accident in 2011. Forty-one coal mine fatalities occurred in 2010 within the same period. Three Powered Haulage fatalities occurred during the same period in 2010.

    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