METAL/NONMETAL MINE FATALITY - On October 29, 1996, a backhoe operator (contractor employee) with two years of mining experience was killed at a limestone quarry. The employee was operating a backhoe loading waste from a settlement pond into haul trucks. The backhoe was stationed on a limestone ledge at the edge of the pond. It is believed that when the bucket of the backhoe reached into the pond for waste material, it pulled the backhoe off the ledge and into the water. The backhoe overturned in the water trapping the employee in the cab causing him to drown. This is the 41st fatality reported in calendar year 1996 in the metal and nonmetal mining industries. As of this date in 1995, there were 40 fatalities reported in these industries. This death is the third fatality classified as machinery this year. There were six machinery fatalities during the same period in 1995.
(This accident has been reclassified from powered haulage to machinery.)
For more information:
MSHA's Fatal Accident Investigation Report [FTL96M41]