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Stone Operator Mining Facts - 2008 (HTML)

DHHS (NIOSH) Publication No. 2011-166

Mining Operations

In 2008, a total of 4,633 stone mining operations reported employment to the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA). [1]  Stone mines comprised 31.1% of all mining operations.

  • Mines producing the primary commodity of limestone (crushed and broken) comprised the largest number of operations (n=2,046; 44.2%).
  • Stone mining operations were located in all states and territories except Delaware.
  • Pennsylvania had the most stone mines (n=394; 8.5%), followed by Texas (n=360; 7.8%).

Employees

A total of 78,975 employees [2] corresponding to 76,749 full-time equivalent (FTE) [3] employees, were reported to MSHA by stone mine operators.

  • Within the mining sectors, [4] stone mine operator employees accounted for 22.5% of all employee hours reported.
  • Stone operator employee hours were reported for both underground (2.6%) and surface (97.4%) work locations. [5]

Graph of the number of employee hours by commodity, 1999-2008 (see data table below)

Click on the image to enlarge.

Data for the previous chart showing the number of employee hours (in millions) by commodity and year
Commodity and Type
of Employer
1999200020012002200320042005200620072008
Coal Operator 170.3 157.3 168.4 163.8 157.1 166.5 181.3 189.0 186.5 200.4
Metal Operator 83.4 77.4 68.8 58.5 55.5 59.5 63.4 67.9 75.5 81.4
Nonmetal Operator 54.7 53.1 50.6 47.5 46.9 46.9 46.2 46.4 46.5 46.5
Stone Operator 167.8 168.5 166.1 161.7 160.0 163.5 168.6 170.8 166.5 153.5
Sand and Gravel Operator 78.9 78.1 77.0 75.3 74.8 76.6 78.4 79.6 76.7 66.7
Coal Contractor 35.4 36.2 40.3 36.5 35.0 38.5 43.0 46.2 45.5 52.6
Noncoal Contractor 47.8 54.2 49.8 39.2 39.9 46.8 54.1 62.6 76.3 80.2

Fatalities

There were seven occupational fatalities among stone mine operator employees in 2008, compared to eight in 2007.

  • The stone mine operator fatality rate was 10.6 [95% confidence interval (CI): 4.3, 21.9] fatalities per 100,000 FTE employees.

Graph of the number of fatalities by mine worker location, 1999-2008 (see data table below)

Click on the image to enlarge.

Data for the previous chart showing the number of fatalities for underground and surface work locations by year
Fatalities1999200020012002200320042005200620072008
Underground 2 1 0 0 1 0 3 0 0 1
Surface 11 14 3 19 8 8 12 10 8 6

Nonfatal Lost-time Injuries

There were 1,626 nonfatal lost-time injuries (33 at underground and 1,593 at surface work locations) among stone operator employees occurring at an overall rate of 2.5 [CI: 2.4, 2.6] injuries per 100 FTE employees.  A total of 75,970 days lost from work [6] resulted from these injuries, comprising 19.9% of days lost across all mining sectors.

  • The nonfatal lost-time injury rate was 1.6 [CI: 1.1, 2.3] for underground and 2.5 [CI: 2.4, 2.6] per 100 FTE for surface work locations.
  • The most frequent classification of nonfatal lost-time injuries for stone operator employees involved handling materials (n=571; 35.1%).
  • Sprains and strains were the most frequently reported nature of injury (n=772; 47.5%).
  • The back was the most frequently reported body part injured (n=282, 17.3%) and accounted for 11,936 days lost from work.

Chart of the distribution of nonfatal lost-time injuries by accident class among stone operator employees, 2008 (see data table below)

Click on the image to enlarge.

Data for the previous chart showing the distribution of nonfatal lost-time injuries by accident class among stone operator employees in 2008
Accident ClassPercent
Handling materials 35.1
Slip or fall of person 24.4
Hand Tools 12.2
Machinery 10.3
Powered Haulage 8.2
All other 9.8

 

Mining operations, 2008

Commodity and Type of EmployerUnderground Mining Operations [1]Surface Mining Operations [1]Total Mining Operations [1]
Coal 665 1,464 2,129
Metal 105 188 293
Nonmetal 44 676 720
Stone 111 4,522 4,633
Sand & Gravel Not applicable 7,132 7,132
Total 925 13,982 14,907

 

 

Contracting companies, 2008

Commodity and Type of EmployerNumber of Companies
Coal 3,467
Noncoal 6,128
Total 9,595

 

 

Employment characteristics, 2008

Commodity and Type of EmployerUnderground Employees [2]Surface Employees [2]Total Employees [2]Underground FTE Employees [3]Surface FTE Employees [3]Total FTE Employees [3]
Coal Operator 40,370 49,685 90,055 45,866 54,312 100,178
Metal Operator 5,844 33,282 39,126 5,842 34,840 40,682
Nonmetal Operator 2,579 20,454 23,033 2,725 20,534 23,260
Stone Operator 1,875 77,100 78,975 2,029 74,720 76,749
Sand & Gravel Operator Not applicable 42,307 42,307 Not applicable 33,343 33,343
Operator Total 50,668 222,828 273,496 56,462 217,750 274,212
Coal Contractor 6,262 37,510 43,772 4,105 22,216 26,321
Noncoal Contractor 2,992 72,459 75,451 1,998 38,088 40,086
Contractor Total 9,254 109,969 119,223 6,103 60,304 66,407
Total 59,922 332,797 392,719 62,565 278,054 340,620

 

 

Mining Occupational Fatalities (per 100,000 FTE employees), 2008

Commodity and Type of EmployerUnderground FatalitiesUnderground Fatality RateSurface FatalitiesSurface Fatality RateFatalitiesFatality Rate
Coal Operator 12 26.2 6 11.9 18 18.7
Metal Operator 3 Not Calculated 2 Not Calculated 5 13.8
Nonmetal Operator 1 Not Calculated 1 Not Calculated 2 Not Calculated
Stone Operator 1 Not Calculated 6 9.4 7 10.6
Sand & Gravel Operator Not applicable Not applicable 3 Not Calculated 3 Not Calculated
Operator Total 17 30.1 18 9.4 35 14.2
Coal Contractor 3 Not Calculated 9 43.4 12 48.3
Noncoal Contractor 0 Not Calculated 5 13.9 5 13.2
Contractor Total 3 Not Calculated 14 24.7 17 27.1
Total 20 32.0 32 12.9 52 16.8

 

 

Nonfatal Lost-time Injuries (per 100 FTE employees), 2008

Commodity and Type of EmployerUnderground InjuriesUnderground Injury RateSurface InjuriesSurface Injury RateInjuriesInjury Rate
Coal Operator 2,103 4.6 768 1.5 2,871 3.0
Metal Operator 163 2.8 649 2.1 812 2.2
Nonmetal Operator 95 3.5 412 2.4 5.7 2.5
Stone Operator 33 1.6 1,593 2.5 1,626 2.5
Sand & Gravel Operator Not applicable Not applicable 550 1.9 550 1.9
Operator Total 2,394 4.2 3,972 2.1 6,366 2.6
Coal Contractor 168 4.1 313 1.5 481 1.9
Noncoal Contractor 38 1.9 463 1.3 501 1.3
Contractor Total 206 3.4 776 1.4 982 1.6
Total 2,600 4.2 4,748 1.9 7,348 2.4

Not calculated when N is less than 5.    95% CI for rates reported above.    Totals may not sum due to independent rounding.

Data source: Publicly released employment and accident/injury/illness data collected by MSHA under 30 CFR 50.

Notes: All analyses of accident data exclude office employees. Occupational fatalities exclude all cases under 17 years of age. Further statistical methodology is available on the NIOSH Internet. Caution should be used when interpreting rates based on a small number of events.

  1. Mines at which only independent contractors were working did not show any employment and were not counted.
  2. Average number of employees working at individual mines during calendar quarters of active operations (includes office workers).
  3. Full-time equivalent employees computed using reported employee hours (2,000 hours = 1 FTE).
  4. Mining sectors include coal operators, metal operators, nonmetal operators, stone operators, sand and gravel operators, coal contractors, and noncoal contractors.
  5. Surface work locations include surface operations at underground mines, surface operations (strip or open pit), dredge, other surface operations, independent shops and yards, and mills or preparation plants.
  6. Includes actual days away from work and/or days of restricted work activity. for permanently disabling injuries only, statutory days charged by MSHA were used if they exceeded the total lost workdays.

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