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COAL MINE FATALITY -On Monday, May 17,1999, a miner at a surface anthracite mine was working as a hydraulic excavator (shovel) operator, loading haul trucks from a spoil material pile. The miner was preparing to load a haul truck when the spoil pile unexpectedly collapsed onto the shovel, covering most of the machine including the operator's compartment. The miner received fatal injuries.

MSHA - Fatalgram Picture
  • The mine operator should develop an adequate ground control plan based on prudent engineering design and follow it to insure safe working conditions.

  • Highwalls, banks, benches, and terrain sloping into the working areas are to be examined for hazardous conditions and hazardous areas shall be scaled before any other work is performed in the area.

  • Operators of mobile equipment should position their equipment to provide the greatest protection for the equipment operator from failure of the highwall or spoil bank.
  • This is the 13th fatality reported in calendar year 1999 in the coal mining industry. As of this date in 1998, there were 9 fatalities. This is the third fatality classified as FALL OF HIGHWALL in 1999.

    For more information:
    MSHA Fatalgram Icon MSHA's Fatal Accident Investigation Report [FTL99C13]