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Fatality Alert - Fatality #16 & #17- November 17, 2013

Accident Report: Fatality Reference: 
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METAL/NONMETAL MINE FATALITY - On November 17, 2013, a 33-year old powderman trainee with 5 weeks of experience and a 59-year old shift supervisor with 36 years of experience were killed at a silver mine. The two miners were in an area of the mine where explosives had been detonated the day before. Other miners working in the area were able to evacuate. Mine rescue teams entered the mine, found the two victims, and brought them to the surface. During the recovery operation, rescue teams detected fatal levels of carbon monoxide. Twenty miners were taken to the hospital and three were kept overnight.

A tunnel entrance to a mine
Best Practices: 
  • Conduct effective workplace examinations. Identify all hazards and take action to correct them.
  • Ensure all active working areas are ventilated prior to allowing miners to work in those areas.
  • Monitor gasses as frequently as necessary to determine the adequacy of control measures.
  • Use properly maintained and calibrated gas detection instruments with alarms for concentrations outside of safe limits that are audible and visual.
  • Ensure all miners are trained to recognize all potential hazards and emergency procedures, including evacuation procedures.
  • Dispose of damaged or deteriorated explosive material in a safe manner in accordance with the instructions of the manufacturer.
Additional Information: 

These are the 16th and 17th fatalities reported in calendar year 2013 in metal and nonmetal mining. As of this date in 2012, there were 16 fatalities reported in metal and nonmetal mining. These are the 2nd and 3rd Explosives and Breaking Agent fatalities in 2013. There were 0 Explosive and Breaking Agent fatalities in the same period in 2012.