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September 14, 2021 Fatality - Fatality Alert

Accident Report: Fatality Reference

PDF Version

MINE FATALITY – On September 14, 2021, an individual was fatally injured when an excavated trench collapsed and engulfed him.  The victim was prospecting for gold inside the trench with a metal detector when the trench collapsed.

Accident scene

Best Practices

  • Stay clear of potentially unstable areas. Do not enter trenches if the trench walls are not properly supported for the full height or sloped to a safe angle.
  • Do not abandon trenches or excavations without removing the potential of collapse by filling or sloping the walls to a stable angle.
  • Carefully examine ground conditions before performing tasks near excavated embankments, trenches, or ditches.
  • Follow OSHA Trenching and Excavation Safety Guidelines located at
  • Train miners about the inherent dangers of trenching work.
  • Keep visitors within sight and sound of a responsible person.

Additional Information

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.