On March 20, 2012, a 54 year-old mine owner with approximately 25 years of experience was killed at an underground gemstone mine. He was cleaning fine ore with a shovel and loading it in the bucket of a front-end loader when rock fell from the top left rib about 20 feet high. The victim was working alone.

Best Practices

  • Examine work areas and identify and control all hazards before starting any work.
  • Establish safe work procedures and train all persons to recognize and understand these procedures.
  • Always examine, sound, and test for loose ground in areas before starting to work, after blasting, and as ground conditions warrant.
  • Test for loose material frequently during work activities and where necessary, scale loose material safely.
  • Install ground support in roof and ribs where conditions warrant.
  • Do not perform work alone in any area where hazardous conditions exist that would endanger your safety.
Click here for: MSHA Preliminary Report (pdf), MSHA Investigation Report (pdf), Overview (powerpoint), Overview (pdf).