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METAL/NONMETAL MINE FATALITY - METAL/NONMETAL MINE FATALITY - On November 19, 2003, a 38-year-old trainer, with 14 years experience, was fatally injured at a surface gold operation. A maintenance crew was repairing a pipeline valve gasket for one of the roasters in the mill and left the area to get some parts. About that time, the victim walked through the area, and received burns when hot calcine dust released through an open pipeline, and hit him. He fell 30 feet, to the concrete floor below.

Photo of Accident Scene 1.  Valve where gasket was being replaced.

2.  Victim apparently fell 30 feet from this level.

Best Practices

  • Establish safe procedures prior to performing any maintenance work and ensure employees are implementing them.

  • Identify hazards associated with the task to be performed and implement measures to ensure persons are properly protected. Barricade the area and post signs to warn others where hazards may be present.

  • Ensure pipelines are empty and free of blockage before any work is performed.

  • Effectively lockout or otherwise positively secure all manual and automatic feeds to processes, including electrical, mechanical, gaseous, and any other energy sources, prior to beginning maintenance work.
  • 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 23rd fatality reported in calendar year 2003 in the metal and nonmetal mining industries. As of this date in 2002, there were 38 fatalities reported in these industries. This is the second fatality classified as "other" in 2003. There were four other fatalities in the same period in 2002.

    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