Mining Publication: Technology News 520 - A Method to Characterize Risk Associated With Mine Roof Conditions
During the first 5 years of this decade, more than one-fourth of the underground mining fatalities occurred as the result of fall of ground. The large openings in underground stone mines present limitations in observing ground conditions because of floor-to-roof heights ranging from 20 to 60 ft or more. Generally, the status of ground conditions in underground stone mines is based on observation and experience obtained during mining development. Some mines use monitoring instruments to gain information on roof conditions, but this practice is typically focused and localized to address issues in a particular area or section of the mine. The Roof Fall Risk Index (RFRI) described here provides a method of systematically characterizing the risk of roof falls to enhance the safety of mine workers.