During the holiday season, it can be easy to lose focus on matters that seem routine. At times like this, our thoughts can drift rather than staying focused on the important duties we are performing. Historically in December, miners engage in hazardous activities that result in fatalities. MSHA investigated four fatal accidents in December 2010.
MSHA would like to remind everyone how important it is to maintain your focus on safety at all times. Take a minute to think about each task you are about to perform as you go about your daily work. Take all of the necessary safety precautions so that you, your co-workers, and families can continue to enjoy the holidays for many years to come. Stay mindful of the hazards and dangers in the mining workplace that, if lost sight of even briefly, can bring unwanted tragedy to our lives. Fix all the hazards you find and don’t take risks.
- Task train all persons to recognize all potential hazardous conditions that can decrease bank or slope stability and ensure they understand safe job procedures for elimination of the hazards.
- Train persons to recognize the hazards of working near belt conveyors.
- De-energize and block belt conveyors against motion before working near a chute, drive, head, tail, and take-up pulleys.
- Lock-out/tag-out all energy sources to belt conveyors before working on them.
- Always use fall protection when working where a fall-to-below hazard exists.
- Establish policies and procedures for safely clearing plugged material in a jaw crusher.
- Maintain and use all available methods of communication, such as sirens and radios, to warn persons of an impending blast. Establish methods to ensure that all persons are out of the blasting area.
- Always wear a life jacket where there is a danger of falling into the water.