The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) issued a “Metal and Nonmetal Mine Safety Alert Preventing Fall of Person Accidents.” In the past decade, 29 miners have died at metal and nonmetal (MNM) mines when they fell from the area where they worked, such as heavy equipment, ladders and conveyor walkways.
MSHA recommends the following best practices:
- Make mobile or stationary platforms, from which miners may work, available at locations where there is risk of falling.
- Assign a safety harness and lanyard to each miner who may work at an elevated height or locations where a fall can occur.
- Construct stable, durable and secure anchor points for miners to attach lanyards at all locations where a fall hazard exists, and inspect these anchor points frequently.
- Post signage, “Fall Protection Is Required Here.”
- Place stable and secure physical barriers around all floor openings through which miners may fall. Yellow caution tape is not acceptable to use as a barrier.
- Design work areas and develop job tasks that minimize fall hazards.
- Mine operators and independent contractors must always comply with these standards that help prevent falls from occurring: §§56/57.11001 Safe access and §§56/57.15005 Safety belts and lines.
Mine Safety and Health Administration, www.msha.gov