NIOSHTIC-2 Publications Search
Sociotechnical communication in an underground mine fire: a study of warning messages during an emergency evacuation.
Mallett-L; Vaught-C; Brnich-MJ Jr.
Saf Sci 1993 Aug; 16(5-6):709-728
This paper discusses social and technical factors associated with underground coal miners' reactions to their operation's warning message system. The authors conducted in-depth interviews with workers who escaped a major fire at their mine and have identified specific junctures at which individual interpretation and response became particularly problematic. It is concluded that the implementation of a few relatively simple human factors principles could have improved the efficacy of warning communication systems at that mine. Since the delay between flame propagation and a decision to evacuate is one of the most important variables in assessing survival chances, these improvements could have invaluable payoffs for other operations as well.
Mining-industry; Underground-mining; Mine-fires; Mine-disasters; Mine-escapes; Mine-workers; Underground-miners; Warning-systems; Behavior-patterns
Issue of Publication
Page last reviewed: April 12, 2019
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division