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Fatality Reports

MSHA investigates each mining fatality and prepares the following documents to alert the mining community and prevent similar occurrences.

  • Fatality Alert - describes the accident and lists best practices that may have prevented it
  • Preliminary Report - initial report with brief description
  • Final Report - investigative findings, including root causes and enforcement actions

Some deaths on mining property are determined to be unrelated to mining activity and are not included in MSHA’s fatality statistics - See recent “non-chargeable” fatalities:
Accident Classification: Powered Haulage
Location: Ohio
Mine Controller: Tim E Bell
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Crushed, Broken Limestone NEC
Accident Classification: Slip or Fall of Person
Location: Illinois
Mine Controller: USS Holdings Inc
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Ground Silica

On November 26, 2014, Daniel Pabian, Leadman with Pabian Enterprises LLC, fell from a ladder. He had reached for a wrench and was climbing the steps of the ladder in an attempt to hand the wrench to a co-worker when he fell and hit his head. He was transported to a hospital, where he died later the same day. The death certificate and autopsy report both indicated that the manner of death was accidental, and the cause of death was a cervical spinal fracture due to a fall from a ladder. Based on the findings of the death certificate, the autopsy report and the MSHA investigation, the committee members concluded that his death should be charged to the mining industry.

Accident Classification: Powered Haulage
Location: Pennsylvania
Mine Controller: George F Edwards Jr
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Crushed, Broken Sandstone
Accident Classification: Falling, Rolling, or Sliding Rock or Material of Any Kind
Location: Texas
Mine Controller: Alcoa Inc
Mine Type: Facility
Mined Material: Alumina
Accident Classification: Slip or Fall of Person
Location: Indiana
Mine Controller: Earl Brinker
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Construction Sand and Gravel

On November 17, 2014, Robert Arnold Fleenor, a 63-year-old truck driver, missed the last step while climbing down the ladder of his haul truck. He hit the tire of the haul truck and then slid down the tire and hit his head on the concrete. Several hours later, he complained of not feeling well, and was subsequently found unresponsive behind the steering wheel of his truck. He was transported to a hospital, where he died on November 27, 2014. The death certificate and autopsy report both indicated that the manner of death was accidental, and the cause of death was a left cerebral infarction due to left subdural hematoma. Based on the findings of the death certificate, the autopsy report, and the MSHA investigation, the committee members concluded that his death should be charged to the mining industry.

(Victim died November 27, 2014)
Accident Classification: Fall of Roof or Back
Location: West Virginia
Mine Controller: Kristopher C Lilly
Mine Type: Underground
Mined Material: Coal (Bituminous)
Accident Classification: Falling, Rolling, or Sliding Rock or Material of Any Kind
Location: Virginia
Mine Controller: Terri Reed Smith; Terry Garth Reed
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Crushed, Broken Granite
(Victim died January 17, 2015)
Accident Classification: Powered Haulage
Location: Wyoming
Mine Controller: Peabody Energy
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Coal (Bituminous)
Accident Classification: Slip or Fall of Person
Location: Pennsylvania
Mine Controller: Heidelberg Cement AG
Mine Type: Facility
Mined Material: Cement
Accident Classification: Fall of Face, Rib, Side or Highwall
Location: Kentucky
Mine Controller: Cox Enterprises; L C Management
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Coal (Bituminous)
Accident Classification: Powered Haulage
Location: Texas
Mine Controller: Texas United Corp
Mine Type: Underground
Mined Material: Salt
Accident Classification: Powered Haulage
Location: Utah
Mine Controller: Robert E Murray
Mine Type: Underground
Mined Material: Coal (Bituminous)
Accident Classification: Machinery
Location: Alabama
Mine Controller: Roger W Perry; Rance Perry; Leah Perry-Haynie
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Coal (Bituminous)
Accident Classification: Slip or Fall of Person
Location: New York
Mine Controller: David George Kasmoch
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Crushed, Broken Limestone NEC
Accident Classification: Electrical
Location: Virginia
Mine Controller: CONSOL Energy Inc
Mine Type: Underground
Mined Material: Coal (Bituminous)
Accident Classification: Falling, Rolling, or Sliding Rock or Material of Any Kind
Location: Montana
Mine Controller: Steve Fossum; Scott Fossum; Carol Fossum
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Construction Sand and Gravel
Accident Classification: Powered Haulage
Location: Florida
Mine Controller: Cemex S A
Mine Type: Facility
Mined Material: Cement
Accident Classification: Electrical
Location: South Carolina
Mine Controller: James O Murray Jr
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Construction Sand and Gravel
Accident Classification: Powered Haulage
Location: Montana
Mine Controller: Cloud Peak Energy Resources LLC
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Coal (Bituminous)
Accident Classification: Ignition or Explosion of Gas or Dust
Location: South Carolina
Mine Controller: Heidelberg Cement AG
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Construction Sand and Gravel
Accident Classification: Other
Location: Texas
Mine Controller: Holcim Ltd; Crow Holdings
Mine Type: Facility
Mined Material: Cement

On June 17, 2014, a fatal accident occurred at Holcim Texas LP. On, September 3, 2014, MSHA referred the accident to the Chargeability Review Committee. On February 2, 2015, the Chargeability Review Committee determined that this death should be charged to the mining industry. The autopsy report indicated that the manner of death was accidental and that the cause of death was asthma exacerbated by environmental dust exposure.

Accident Classification: Slip or Fall of Person
Location: Utah
Mine Controller: Karen Palmer
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Gypsum

(Victim died July 28, 2014)

On June 14, 2014, Kevin Lee Ames, a 35-year-old laborer, was using a propane torch to shrink-wrap pelletized gypsum when he received serious burns on 35% of his body. He was subsequently discovered by a co-worker and transported to a hospital. He died on July 28, 2014. The death certificate indicated that the cause of death was mucormycosis (fungal infection) due to burns, and that the manner of death was an accident. An autopsy was not performed. Based on the findings of the death certificate and the MSHA investigation, the Fatality Review Committee determined that the death should be charged to the mining industry.

Accident Classification: Machinery
Location: Wyoming
Mine Controller: Peabody Energy
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Coal (Bituminous)
Accident Classification: Hoisting
Location: Idaho
Mine Controller: Sunshine Silver Mines Corp
Mine Type: Underground
Mined Material: Silver Ore
Accident Classification: Machinery
Location: Illinois
Mine Controller: Coalfield Transport Inc
Mine Type: Underground
Mined Material: Coal (Bituminous)
Accident Classification: Machinery
Location: Arizona
Mine Controller: Thomas Short; Linda Short
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Construction Sand and Gravel

On May 13, 2014, a 67-year-old mechanic was standing on the motor drive belt guard of the cone crusher and was knocked off of the crusher by an excavator bucket. The mechanic fell approximately 11 feet to the ground. The victim was severely injured in the fall and taken to a local hospital where he underwent emergency surgery to stabilize him. The victim was moved to a rehab facility and died on May 26, 2015. Based on the findings of an onsite MSHA investigation and an extensive review of medical documentation, the chargeability review committee concluded that his death should be charged to the mining industry.

(Victim died May 26, 2015)
Accident Classification: Fall of Face, Rib, Side or Highwall
Location: West Virginia
Mine Controller: Patriot Coal Corporation
Mine Type: Underground
Mined Material: Coal (Bituminous)
Accident Classification: Powered Haulage
Location: Texas
Mine Controller: Cemtech International Inc; Synergy Materials Inc
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Sand, Industrial NEC
Accident Classification: Powered Haulage
Location: Nevada
Mine Controller: Paul R Gianoli
Mine Type: Surface
Mined Material: Gypsum
Accident Classification: Machinery
Location: Nevada
Mine Controller: Klondex Mines Ltd
Mine Type: Underground
Mined Material: Gold Ore