MSHA issues safety alert for fall prevention

The U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration recently released a safety alert to prevent falls from height to address a lengthy trend of injuries and deaths.

According to the agency, 22 miners and contractors have been fatally injured in fall-from-height accidents over the past decade, and more than 1,000 have been disabled or lost time from work over the same period.

In addition, MSHA stressed, more than 100 fatal and serious injuries are reported in these accidents each year.

It is now stressing operators work to prevent these injuries by providing walkways and platforms with handrails that provide safe access, and by using adequate fall protection. 

MSHA is also highlighting these best practices:

  • Reduce hazards. Design work areas and develop job tasks to minimize fall hazards.
  • Have a program. Establish an effective fall prevention and protection program. Provide task and site-specific hazard training that prohibits working at unprotected locations.
  • Provide fall protection to each miner who may work at an elevated height, or a location unprotected by handrails. Ensure their use.
  • Provide secure anchor points.
  • Provide mobile or stationary platforms or scaffolding at locations and on work projects where there is a risk of falling.
  • Provide safe truck tarping and bulk truck hatch access facilities.

A printable safety alert on the topic can be found here

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