m04On April 9, 2016, a 25-year old plant operator with 4 years of mining experience was fatally injured at a surface copper ore mine. He was found unresponsive, kneeling with his face against a stainless steel flange that was connected to a high-density polyethylene pipe. The victim appeared to have received an electrical shock.

Best Practices

  • Establish and discuss safe work procedures that include hazard analysis before beginning work. Identify and control all hazards associated with the work to be performed and use methods to properly protect persons.
  • Train all persons to understand the hazards associated with working near energized electrical conductors.
  • Use properly rated Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) including Arc Flash Protection such as a hood, gloves, shirt, and pants.
  • Ensure that all electrical systems are safely designed and properly installed and that all metal enclosing or encasing electrical circuits are grounded or provided with equivalent protection.
  • Provide equipment grounding conductors, with a sufficiently low impedance to limit the voltage to ground, for metal enclosures.  Use a properly rated meter to identify any stray electrical currents which may be present.
  • Lock Out, Tag Out, and Try: Place your lock and tag on the disconnecting device and test for power.

Click here for: MSHA Preliminary Report (pdf), MSHA Investigation Report (pdf), Overview (pdf).

ftl2014c09On Wednesday, August 20, 2014, a 41-year-old maintenance supervisor with approximately 19 years of mining experience was killed when he came in contact with an energized component inside an explosion proof enclosure.  The victim had removed the enclosure’s panel cover and was troubleshooting or performing electrical work on the 600 VAC roof bolting machine when he was electrocuted.

Best Practices
  • Wear properly rated and well maintained electrical gloves when troubleshooting or testing energized circuits.
  • REMEMBER, troubleshooting or testing is the work of locating electrical problems and verifying that proper repairs have been made.
  • After locating the electrical problem, and before performing electrical work, open the circuit breaker, and disconnect and lock-out and tag-out the visual disconnecting device.
  • Use properly rated electrical meters and non-contact voltage testers to ensure electrical circuits are deenergized prior to performing electrical work.
  • REMEMBER, electrical work is the work required to install or maintain electrical equipment or conductors.
  • Perform your own lock-out and tag-out procedure and NEVER rely on others to do this for you.
  • Install warning labels on a circuit breaker’s line side terminals stating that the terminal lugs remain energized when the circuit breaker is open.
  • Develop, communicate, and execute a written plan before performing electrical troubleshooting and repair to ensure that safety is maximized for all miners involved in the task.

Click here for: MSHA Preliminary Report (pdf), MSHA Investigation Report (pdf).

ftl2014m15On July 21, 2014, a 28-year-old assistant plant manager with 11 years of mining experience was killed at a sand and gravel dredge operation.  He was riding in an aluminum boat that became stuck in low water on top of 480 volt energized power conductors.  The victim was electrocuted when he exited the boat, attempting to pull slack on the power conductors.

Best Practices

  • Establish and discuss safe work procedures before beginning work. Identify and control all hazards associated with the work to be performed and use methods to properly protect persons.
  • Train all persons to understand the hazards associated with working near energized electrical conductors.
  • De-energize power and ensure that the circuit is visibly open before working near energized conductors that may have damaged insulation.
  • Lock and Tag! Place YOUR lock and tag on the disconnecting device.
  • Use properly rated Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) including Arc Flash Protection such as a hood, gloves, shirt, and pants.
  • Ensure electrical conductors are properly rated and designed for the applications used.
  • Ensure that ground fault protection is provided to protect persons
  • Ensure that all electrical systems are safely designed and properly installed.

Click here for: MSHA Preliminary Report (pdf)

ftl2013m18On November 18, 2013, a 33-year old contract electrician foreman with 14 years of experience was injured at a crushed stone mine. The victim was working in a 480-volt electrical enclosure, pulling cable for a new pump that was being installed, when he contacted energized conductors. He was transported to a hospital where he died on November 22, 2013.

Best Practices

  • Ensure that persons are trained on all electrical tests and safety equipment necessary to safely test and ground the circuit where work is to be performed.
  • Positively identify the circuit on which work is to be conducted.
  • De-energize power and ensure that the circuit is visibly open for circuits being worked on and circuits near the work area.
  • Lock and Tag! Place YOUR lock and tag on the disconnecting device.
  • Use properly rated Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) including Arc Flash Protection such as a hood, gloves, shirt, and pants.
  • Ensure ALL electrical components in the enclosure are de-energized by testing for voltage using properly rated test equipment.
  • Install warning labels on the terminal covers of bottom feed circuit breakers warning that “Bottom terminal lugs remain energized when the circuit breaker is open.”

Click here for: MSHA Preliminary Report (pdf), MSHA Investigation Report (pdf), Overview (powerpoint), Overview (pdf).

Those of you who have been in my class have seen this little toy. I have it labeled “LOCK-OUT/TAG-OUT NOT REQUIRED even though it’s an electrical device, because it’s smarter than most. It doesn’t do much, but as I say, I’m easily amused. In fact, all it does if you flip the toggle switch on the top is turn itself back off… hence the safety without LOTO. Turn it on and a little plastic piece comes out, turns itself back off and then quickly retreats into the box for the next round.

You can buy kits or find your way to free plans here. There are also some entertaining videos to watch of useless boxes in action.

Use this file to print your own label.

by | Categories: Humor, Safety Materials | Tagged: | No Comments

On Friday, March 23, 2012, a 37-year old electrician, with approximately 3½ years experience (approximately 1½ years as an electrician), was killed when he contacted the energized conductors of a shuttle car trailing cable. He was making the final electrical connections for a replacement cable reel when he was electrocuted.

Best Practices

  • Develop a hazard analysis work plan before conducting repairs.
  • Always lock and tag-out electrical equipment prior to electrical work.
  • Perform your own lock and tag-out procedure. Never rely on others to de-energize or disconnect a circuit for you.
  • Use proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for all electrical work.
  • Ensure that all electrical circuits and circuit breakers are identified properly before troubleshooting or performing electrical work.
  • Use properly rated non-contact voltage testers to ensure that circuits are de-energized.
  • Eliminate personal distractions when working on equipment.

For more information related to Lock and Tag safety, click on the following link on the MSHA Web site: Lock and Tag Safety

Click here for: MSHA Preliminary Report (pdf),  MSHA Investigation Report (pdf).

On September 13, 2011, a 38 year-old miner with 3 years of experience was killed at a portable sand and gravel operation. The victim opened the 480 volt feeder box at the motor control center and started to remove the leads when he received a fatal shock.

Best Practices

  • Be trained on all the electrical tests and safety equipment necessary to safely test and ground the circuit being worked on.
  • Conduct a risk assessment.
  • Use properly rated Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) including Arc Flash Protection such as a hood, gloves, shirt, and pants.
  • Positively identify the circuit on which work is to be conducted.
  • De-energize power and ensure that the circuit is visibly open.
  • Place YOUR lock and tag on the disconnecting device.
  • Verify the circuit is de-energized by testing for voltage using properly rated test equipment.
  • Ensure ALL electrical components in the enclosure are de-energized.
  • Ground ALL phase conductors to the equipment grounding medium with grounding equipment that is properly rated.
Click here for: MSHA Preliminary Report (pdf), MSHA Investigation Report(pdf), Overview(powerpoint), Overview (pdf).

On Wednesday, July 27, 2011, a 39-year-old miner with 22 years of mining experience was electrocuted while welding to connect two pipes together. He was working in the ceiling of the filter room of a preparation plant. This area, where the welding was being conducted, was wet and the illumination was limited. The victim contacted an energized welding electrode.

Best Practices

  • Do not touch an energized electrode with bare skin.
  • Avoid wet working conditions. A person’s perspiration can lower the body’s resistance to electrical shock. Do not drape electrode wires or leads over your body.
  • Work in a confined space only if it is well ventilated and illuminated.
  • Do not use the plant structure as the work (return) conductor. Connect the work cable (return) as close to the welding area as practical to prevent welding current from traveling unknown paths and causing possible shock, spark, and fire hazards.
  • Insulate yourself from work and ground by using and/or wearing dry insulating mats, covers, clothes, footwear, and gloves. Inspect welding gloves for damage prior to welding and ensure the gloves are dry.
  • Use only well maintained equipment. Frequently inspect welding wires or leads for damaged or exposed conductors. Replace or repair wires or leads immediately if damaged.
  • Use voltage reduction safety devices (if available) for arc welders.

For additional information, please see MSHA’s Safety Target Packages at http://www.msha.gov/Safety_Targets/MaintenanceMNM/Welding 20safety.pdf

Click here for: MSHA Preliminary Report (pdf), MSHA Investigation Report (pdf).

NIOSH has issued a new Workplace Solutions publication on Using Lockout and Tagout Proceduresto Prevent Injury and Death during Machine Maintenance. The four page publication reviews the exposure of the hazard in OSHA industries and the OSHA Standard. It examines a case report of a fatality involving a Millwright and lists recommendations for employers, workers, and manufacturers. You can download a copy in pdf format here.

MNM Fatality 16 2010

On October 10, 2010, a 42 year- old contract electrician with 4 years of experience was seriously injured at a granite operation. The victim and two co-workers were installing ground fault indicator lights in a circuit breaker enclosure when an arc flash occurred. The circuit breaker enclosure contained a bottom feed circuit breaker. All three workers were hospitalized and the victim died on October 12, 2010.

Before YOU perform electrical work:

  • Be trained on all the electrical tests and safety equipment necessary to safely test and ground the circuit being worked on.
  • Conduct a risk assessment.
  • Use properly rated Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) including Arc Flash Protection such as a hood, gloves, shirt, and pants.
  • Positively identify the circuit on which work is to be conducted.
  • De-energize power and ensure that the circuit is visibly open.
  • Place YOUR lock and tag on the disconnecting device.
  • Verify the circuit is de-energized by testing for voltage using properly rated test equipment.
  • Ensure ALL electrical components in the enclosure are de-energized.
  • Ground ALL phase conductors to the equipment grounding medium with grounding equipment that is properly rated.
  • Install warning labels on the terminal covers of bottom feed circuit breakers stating the “Bottom terminal lugs remain energized when the circuit breaker is open.”

Click here for: MSHA Preliminary Report (pdf), MSHA Investigation Report (pdf), Overview (powerpoint), Overview (pdf).