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District 5 - Coal Mine Safety and Health

A Near Miss

On Tuesday, April 16, 2002, at approximately 11:08 a. m., a 37 year-old truck driver was involved in a potentially life threatening accident when the metallic frame of the tarping device of his coal truck came in contact with a 69,000 volt powerline. The high-voltage powerline crosses the mine entrance road of a coal load-out facility. After his truck was loaded, the truck driver began to exit the load-out facility and tarp the truck bed at the same time. A switch located in the cab of the truck actuates the hydraulically operated tarping device. When the truck passed under the high-voltage powerline, the tarp was not in its down position and contacted the powerline. Six of the truck's tires were destroyed due to the electrical current. The truck driver remained in the cab of the truck and did not experience an electrical shock. He received only a minor injury.

Tarping Signs
Tarping Platform

Best Practices