MSHA issues best practices after roof fall death

THE US Mine Safety and Health Administration has issued a set of best practices following last month’s roof fall in a Virginia coal mine that left one miner dead and another injured.
MSHA issues best practices after roof fall death MSHA issues best practices after roof fall death MSHA issues best practices after roof fall death MSHA issues best practices after roof fall death MSHA issues best practices after roof fall death

The scene of the incident.

Christine Feary

The incident marks the eighth coal mine fatality recorded in the US in 2008.

On April 22, a 61-year-old roof bolting machine operator with 30 years experience was fatally injured while observing a continuous mining machine in operation.

A rock measuring 36in x 72in x (0–14in) fell from the roof, killing the victim and leaving the continuous miner operator with non-fatal injuries.

MSHA recommended some best practices to adopt to avoid similar incidents:

  • Conduct a thorough visual examination of the roof, face and ribs immediately before and after work is performed;
  • Be alert to any change in roof conditions;
  • Identify and remove loose roof material from a safe position; and
  • Mine personnel not essential to the activity being carried out should remain outside the work zone.
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