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MSHA releases analysis of fatalities in the US mining industry in 1Q14

World Cement,

Incident at UK cement plant

Cemex UK has confirmed that there was a serious incident at its South Ferriby cement plant in North Lincolnshire on Tuesday 6 May, which has resulted in the fatality of a contractor working on the repairs, due to flooding that took place in December 2013.

All operations and work at the plant were immediately suspended. Cemex is working with the relevant authorities to investigate and fully understand the circumstances of this tragic incident. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has now handed the site back to Cemex.

‘Our thoughts are with the contractor’s family and friends. The health and safety of all our employees and all those working on our sites is our number one priority,’ concludes the Cemex statement.

US mining fatalities analysis from MSHA

The US Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) has released its 1Q14 fatality analysis. According to preliminary data, eight miners died in the US mining industry during this period, three of which were in coal mining accidents and five of which were in accidents in the metal and nonmetal mining sectors. This figure represents an improvement on 4Q13, when 15 fatalities occurred, and it is also in line with recent historic low numbers of mining deaths in the US.

However, MSHA notes that the metal and nonmetal sector is not following this trend. In October 2013 – April 2014, there were 18 mining deaths in the metal and nonmetal mining industry. These occurred at crushed stone, cement, lime, clay, sand and gravel, gold, granite and iron ore mining operations across 12 US states. Six fatalities were at underground mines and 12 were at surface mines. A summit has been called in response to the number of fatalities in the metal and nonmetal sector. In the MSHA statement on 1Q14 fatalities, the Assistant Secretary writes: ‘Mine operators need to examine the quality of training miners are receiving as well as the examinations of miner’s work places. These appear to be deficient and MSHA will be paying close attention to those during mine inspections, as well as the types of hazards and conditions leading to these deaths’. Details on the mining deaths presented at the summit can be found here.

The statement goes on to point out that: ‘Mining deaths are preventable. While we have made progress, it is clear there is more to be done. In order to prevent mine deaths, operators must have in place effective safety and health management programs that are constantly evaluated; “find-and-fix” programs to identify and eliminate mine hazards; and training for all mining personnel.’

A summary of 1Q14 fatalities in the metal and nonmetal sector, along with health and safety best practice, can be downloaded here.

Adapted from press releases by

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