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METAL/NONMETAL MINE FATALITY - On July 26, 2012, a 49-year old equipment operator with 18 weeks of mining experience was killed at a portable crushing operation. He was standing on the discharge end of a 150-foot stacker belt conveyor, greasing the head pulley, when a coworker started the conveyor. The victim fell off the conveyor approximately 50 feet to the ground below.

Photo of Accident Scene Described in the Paragraph Above

Best Practices

  • Provide and maintain a safe means of access to all working places.
  • Establish policies and procedures for conducting specific tasks on belt conveyors.
  • Ensure that persons are task trained and understand the hazards associated with the work being performed.
  • Deenergize and Lock-out/tag-out all power sources before working on belt conveyors.
  • Block belt conveyors against motion before working near a drive, head, tail, and take-up pulleys.
  • Maintain communications with all persons performing the task. Before starting belt conveyors, ensure that all persons are clear.
  • Sound an audible alarm prior to start up, if the entire length of the belt conveyor is not visible from the starting switch.
  • Clearly label all switches on equipment and provide training to persons who operate and work in the vicinity of equipment.
  • 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 10th fatality reported in calendar year 2012 in the metal and nonmetal mining industries. As of this date in 2011, there were 6 fatalities reported in these industries. This is the 5thPowered Haulage fatality in 2012. There was 1 Powered Haulage fatality in the same period in 2011.

    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