Powered haulage accidents can be prevented with proper training.On June 8th, fifty-six-year-old truck driver and employee of Illinois-based Hastie Mining, James H. Magnus, was involved in a fatal powered haulage accident involving a rock cave-in accident at an open pit, located at a Hardin quarry facility. Magnus was operating a Caterpillar 777F haul truck, transporting and dumping gravel on the premises. During a routine dumping process, the ground at dump-point collapsed, sending the truck, and Magnus, over the edge. The haul truck overturned and landed on its roof, roughly thirty-feet below. The Hastie employee was severely injured in the overturning and was transported to a nearby hospital, where he died of his injuries.

MSHA lists the following best practices as applicable in aforementioned powered haulage circumstances:

    • Ensure seat belts are provided, maintained, and worn at all times when equipment is in operation
    • Incorporate engineering controls that require seat belts to be properly fastened before equipment can be put into motion
    • Visually inspect dumping locations prior to beginning work and as conditions change
    • While loading out stockpiles, do not excavate the toe of the slopes below dumping points and travel-ways
    • Utilize a bulldozer with the “dump-short/ push-over” method of stockpiling material
    • Provide and maintain adequate berms on roadway banks and at dumping points where a drop-off exists
    • Train miners to recognize and avoid dumping point hazards

Powered haulage accidents are among the most common in the mining industry. Safety leaders would do well to observe and implement agency best-practices, to ensure the safety of their respective employees and compliance with agency health and safety standards. One resource that employers and employees can both utilize, to that end, is an MSHA-approved online training course. Certification courses are offered, as a means to fulfill requisite certification standards, and as a prudent safeguard for those employees and employers who have already worked in the field

Powered Haulage Accident Proves Fatal in Illinois