District 5 - Coal Mine Safety and Health
Roof/Rib Highwall Alert
Three major roof falls and one highwall collapse have occurred in District 5 (Virginia) from October 2, 1999 to October 4, 1999.
- One Wise County mine experienced a roof fall measuring 30' x 10' x 4' which caught the continuous mining machine.
- Another mine, located in Buchanan County, had a 100' x 20' x 6' roof fall that trapped a shuttle car.
- Still another Buchanan County mine had a roof fall measuring 50' x 18' x 6' that fell on a Stamler Feeder.
- An underground mine located near the Tazewell County - Buchanan County line experienced a highwall collapse. The collapse measured 10' x 200' x 25' covering the No. 1 and No. 2 entries along with the canopy of the No. 3 entry. The fall also caught the high voltage cable, belt conveyor, and three canopies.
ALWAYS REMEMBER TO:
- Use safety benches when strata allows.
- Invest time in initial high wall development - it will pay later.
- Evaluate roof/rib conditions closely during seasonal changes.
- Focus on visual checks.
- Remember, the roof control plan is a minimum requirement, in adverse conditions supplement your support.