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MSHA issues call to safety to US coal miners

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World Coal,

Starting 29 August 2016, the US Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is issuing a call to safety to coal miners working in underground and opencast mines across the US.

According to MSHA data, since October 2015, eight fatalities and more than 1100 nonfatal accidents have occurred in the nation’s coal mines, resulting in restricted duty, missed days at work and permanent disabilities for the miners who worked there. While injury rates have been fairly consistent during this time period, records indicate a trend in accidents resulting in more serious injuries. The circumstances in at least 30 of the accidents might have led to fatalities.

In MSHA’s safety issue call, inspectors will engage coal miners and mine operators in ‘walk and talks’ through to 30 September, reminding them to ‘stop and take a breath’ before proceeding with the next task at hand.

The most common outcomes of the more than 1100 mining accidents – 250 of which occurred at opencast operations – were injuries to the back, shoulders, knees and fingers. In the near-fatal accidents, the majority were attributed to powered haulage, electrical and machinery classifications.

The majority of non-fatal accidents occurred in West Virginia, with 419; Kentucky, with 191; and Pennsylvania, with 130.

“These walk and talks are intended to increase miners’ awareness of recent accidents, encourage the application of safety training and raise hazard recognition,” said Joseph A. Main, assistant secretary of Labor for Mine Safety and Health.

Edited from press release by Harleigh Hobbs

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