Mining Publication: A Comparison of Longwall & Continuous Mining Safety in U.S. Coal Mines 1988-1997
This paper contains the results of an examination of accident, injury, employment, and production information reported to the U.S. Department of Labor's Mines Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) and provides information on some of the measures longwall mine operators are using to prevent accidents. In all industries, technological advances play a key role in determining those who will survive as competitive participants in an increasingly global marketplace. While mining is among the most basic of industries, technological change is neither unfamiliar nor unwelcome to miners. Historically, technological advances in mining, particularly coal mining, have tracked closely with fluctuations in demand. There is little doubt that longwall mining has greatly increased underground coal mining productivity. The degree to which longwall mining has contributed to a safer work environment for underground miners is more difficult to ascertain.