MSHA releases report on electrical fatality at crushed stone operation

February 27, 2014

Screen-Shot-2013-12-06-at-11.46.33-AMThe Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) has released the investigation report on a Nov. 18, 2013, fatality at a crushed stone operation involving a 49-year-old lead mechanic who 33-year-old contract electrician foreman with 14 years of experience who was killed after he contacted an energized conductor inside an electrical enclosure.

He died in a hospital on Nov. 22 as a result of his injuries.

Click here to read MSHA’s best practices for working with electricity.

According to the investigation report, MSHA identified the root cause of the accident to be that “[t]he electrical circuit was not de-energized prior to work being performed on it. Additionally, the electrical circuit was not locked out, tagged out, or tested to verify it was de-energized.”

Following the fatality, operation management implemented the following corrective action: “The contractor re-instructed all persons regarding the procedures to be followed when performing work on electrical equipment.”

MSHA issued and one order and one citation on Nov. 18, 2013, to the operation.

The order was issued under the provisions Section 103(j) of the Mine Act “to assure the safety of all persons at this operation” and “to prevent the destruction of any evidence which would assist investigating the cause or causes of the accident.”

The order was terminated on Nov. 26, after management implemented the corrective action listed above.

The citation was issued under the provisions of Section 104(d)(1) of the Mine Act for a violation of 30 CFR 56.12017. MSHA notes: “The electrical foreman acted with aggravated conduct constituting more than ordinary negligence by knowing that the system was energized and failed to take the necessary steps to de-energize or use proper PPE for hot work applications. This violation is an unwarrantable failure to comply with a mandatory standard.”

To read the full investigation report, click here.

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