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MSHA Seasonal Safety Alert

MSHA Seasonal Safety AlertDuring the fall, many intermittent mines are preparing for the winter season and performing annual shutdown or repair activities. During this time miners may be performing new or unfamiliar tasks, working with equipment they service only once a year, or working in a reduced-sized workforce.

This time of the year has historically seen a large number of powered haulage and machinery fatalities that occurred while disassembling portable plants, moving equipment into storage and breaking down equipment for major repairs.

Possible Hazardous Tasks

  • Disassembling conveyors and transporting and storing sections
  • Accessing pumping stations, especially floating pump decks
  • Rigging, lifting and towing equipment
  • Rebuilding crushers and screens
  • Winterizing sand wash facilities

Possible Hazardous Conditions

  • Unfamiliarity with tasks or equipment
  • Working around water
  • Working at height
  • Working in cold weather, snow or ice

Best Practices

  • Identify hazards through effective workplace exams
  • Control hazards through detailed work plan
  • Provide effective task training based on work plan
  • Lock out and block equipment against hazardous motion
  • Provide necessary PPE

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