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What difference does age make? Part 3: Metal ore mine injuries.

Mallett-LG; Peters-RH; Schwerha-DJ
Holmes Saf Assn Bull 2006 Mar; :8-15
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2002 the U.S. metal ore mining workforce had a higher median age (42.3 years) than the workforce of all employed persons in the United States, where the median age was 40.1 years. In 2002, 16,000 meal ore mine workers, or 47% of the workforce, were over 44 years old. When looking at 10-year age groups, one would expect the percentage of workers in each group to be equal if workers were entering and leaving the industry in a consistent way. Instead, the age groups increase in size through age 54. The largest group (38.2%) is the 45-54 age category. Less than one-quarter of the workforce (23.5%) is under age 35. We see similar trends in the data for surface mines and mills when we look at injuries reported to the Mine Safety and Health Administration for 2002. The underground pattern is somewhat different. Metal ore mine operators reported 1,090 injuries in 2002. The average age for injured underground metal miners was 38 years. It was 43 years for both surface miners and mill workers. When divided into age categories, the largest group at surface mines and mills was the 45- to 54-year-old group. At underground mines, it was the 35- to 44-year-old group. Looking at generational categories is another way to explore mining injury data. Although there are different ways that people categorize the generational groups, they are all fairly similar. One strategy identifies the groups as (1) Veterans (age 60 and older), (2) Baby Boomers (42-59 years old), (3) Generation Xers (22-41 years old), and (4) Nexters (younger than 22 years old). An examination of accidents by classification reveals differences in the injury experiences across the generational groups.
Age-factors; Age-groups; Workers; Mining-industry; Mine-workers; Safety-research; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Accidents; Accident-statistics; Underground-mining; Materials-handling; Hazards; Lost-work-days; Miners; Metal-mining; Surface-mining; Hand-tools
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Pittsburgh Research Laboratory, 626 Cochrans Mill Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15236
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Holmes Safety Association Bulletin