The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) issued a Serious Accident Alert after a rock struck a portable crusher operator during the winter of 2017. A miner at a sand and gravel operation was operating a portable crusher when a large rock fell, striking him on the left side of his head. He was wearing a hard hat at the time, but was taken to the hospital and released later that day.
MSHA offers the following Best Practices to help prevent this type of accident:
- Be mindful of falling material hazards and the risks from rock that can fly out from the crusher.
- Wear required personal protective equipment.
- Install adequate guarding in areas where miners work to protect them from the hazards of falling or flying rock from the crusher.
- Restrict access to areas prone to falling or flying material.
- When performing maintenance, prevent unplanned and hazardous movement of equipment by using lockout/tagout procedures. Fall protection is required where there is danger of falling.
- Train miners on hazards associated with portable crushing operations.