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Chemical-related injuries and illnesses in U.S. mining.

Authors
Scott-DF; Merritt-EM; Miller-AL; Drake-PL
Source
Min Eng 2009 Jul; 61(7):41-46
NIOSHTIC No.
20035980
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to determine if miners were at risk from exposures to chemicals used in the mining industry and determine the nature and sources of the illnesses and injuries. The U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration's (MSHA) employment and accident, injury and illness database was reviewed. There were 2,705 cases of chemical-related injuries and illnesses reported from 1999 through 2006, involving 66 different chemicals. The main source (cause) of chemical-related cases was acids/alkalis (about 39%). The primary nature (effect) of chemical-related cases was chemical burns (about 57%). The job classification where workers incurred the most chemical-related injuries and illnesses was cleaning plant operator/media operator/boney preparation plant operator/crusher worker (cleaning plant operators are responsible for maintenance of plants, media operators are responsible for handling reagents, boney preparation plant operators oversee removal of "bone" from coal, and crusher workers use large crushers to break mined material). From 1999 through 2006, the rate of "nonfatal days lost" and "no days lost" (resulting from injuries) did not change significantly; however, the rate of illnesses decreased significantly. Chemical burns accounted for a large number of injuries; mining companies should carefully examine their personal protective equipment (PPE) requirements, training methods and safety culture to ensure that their workers are protected.
Keywords
Mining-industry; Statistical-analysis; Injuries; Accident-rates; Accidents; Accident-statistics; Acids; Alkalies; Chemical-burns; Mine-workers; Mineral-processing; Coal-processing
CODEN
MIENAB
Publication Date
20090701
Document Type
Journal Article
Fiscal Year
2009
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Issue of Publication
7
ISSN
0026-5187
NIOSH Division
SRL
Priority Area
Mining
Source Name
Mining Engineering
State
WA
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