In 2003, a total of 3,989 contracting companies reported employment at noncoal mines (metal, nonmetal, sand and gravel, and stone mines) to the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA). A total of 39,183 noncoal contractor employees, corresponding to 18,871 full-time equivalent (FTE) employees, were reported to MSHA in 2003. This is an increase of 1.8% in FTE noncoal contractor employees from 2002. Four work-related fatalities occurred among noncoal contractor employees in 2003, compared to six in 2002. There were 257 nonfatal lost-time injuries among noncoal contractor employees, occurring at a rate of 1.4 per 100 FTE employees in 2003. A total of 15,213 days lost from work resulted from these injuries. Twelve cases of occupational illness in noncoal contractor employees were reported to MSHA in 2003. There were five cases of heat/sunstroke; two cases each of hearing loss or impairment and joint, tendon, muscle inflammation or irritation; and one case each of asphyxia, noncontact electric burn, and an unclassified occupational disease.
NIOSH Pittsburgh Research Laboratory, P.O. Box 18070, Pittsburgh, PA 15236