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COAL MINE FATALITY - On Monday, November 7, 2011, a 47 year old mine foreman, with approximately 26 years of mining experience, was killed when he was pinned between a battery-powered, rubber-tire personnel carrier and a coal rib. The personnel carrier had become stuck in reverse and the victim was positioned on his knees in front of the personnel carrier. When the operator placed the directional switch in forward, the personnel carrier traveled forward, striking the victim. A wooden crib block had fallen onto the control pedals and restricted their use.

Photo of Accident Scene

Best Practices
  • Never transport supplies or extraneous materials in a vehicle or on top of equipment that is not appropriate for the task.
  • Never obstruct the vision of the equipment operator with the load.
  • Do not operate a vehicle with debris, loose material, or trash in the operator's compartment.
  • Never position yourself in an area or location where equipment operators cannot readily see you.
  • Be aware of your location in relation to movement of equipment, especially in lower coal seams.
  • Train miners to use effective means of communication between themselves and equipment operators.
  • When operating mobile equipment, ensure that other workers are in a safe area before moving the equipment.v
  • Conduct Task Training for each type of personnel carrier or equipment being operated.
  • For more information on preventing these types of accidents, click on the following link:
  • 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 20th fatality reported during calendar year 2011 in the coal mining industry. As of this date in 2010, there were 46 coal mining fatalities. This is the fourth Powered Haulage fatality in 2011. At this time in 2010, there were seven fatalities reported in this classification.

    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