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COAL MINE FATALITY - On Saturday, March 10, 2012, at approximately 6:15 p.m., a 34-year-old section foreman with 11 years of experience was killed while operating a continuous mining machine in the No. 2 entry. He was struck by a section of rock that fell from the right-hand rib. The rock was approximately 10 feet and 6 inches long, 3 feet and 4 inches high, and 10 inches thick.

Photo of Accident Scene Described in Paragraph Above
Best Practices

  • Conduct thorough pre-shift and on-shift examinations of the roof, face, and ribs. A thorough exam must be conducted before any work or travel is started in an area and thereafter as conditions warrant.
  • Support any loose roof or rib material adequately or scale loose material before working or traveling in an area.
  • When hazardous roof or rib conditions are detected, areas should be dangered-off until they are made safe.
  • Rib bolts, installed on cycle and in a consistent pattern, provide the best protection from rib falls.
  • Assure that the Approved Roof Control Plan is followed and is suitable for the geologic conditions encountered. If adverse conditions are encountered, the plan must be revised to provide adequate support for the control of the roof, face, and ribs.

  • 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 fourth fatality reported in calendar year 2012 in the coal mining industry. As of this date in 2011 there were two fatalities reported in the coal mining industry. This is first fatality classified as a Machinery accident in 2012. At this time in 2011, there were no fatalities 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