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COAL MINE FATALITY - On Saturday, May 29, a section foreman with 30 years mining experience, was seriously injured while attempting to help a roof bolting machine operator remove a 48-inch drill steel that was stuck in a drill hole in the mine roof. The victim was using a 24-inch extension to try and dislodge the drill steel. He came in contact with the rotation lever for the roof bolt machine and his right hand and rubber coated glove wrapped around the extension, resulting in severe injuries to his right hand and forearm. The injuries were not considered life threatening, but did require surgery and extensive physical therapy. Approximately five months later, another surgery was performed to help relieve the pain in his right hand. The victim died in the hospital following the surgery on October 31,1999. Since the surgery was being performed as a result of a job related injury, the fatality was charged to the mining industry.

Fatal Alert Bulletin Photo
  • Wear proper gloves for the task. Gloves worn while performing roof bolting operations should not be loose or made of a material such as rubber that can increase friction.

  • Never grip the drill steel while it is rotating.
  • This is the 35th fatality reported in calendar year 1999 in the coal mining industry. The accident occurred on May 29 and resulted in a fatality on October 31, 1999. As of May 29, 1998, there were 10 fatalities. There were 29 fatalities for the calendar year 1998.

    For more information:

    Fatal Alert Bulletin Icon MSHA's Fatal Accident Investigation Report [FTL99C35]

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