The Mine Safety and Health Administration issued a “close call accident alert” after a structural failure at a sand and gravel mine.
MSHA said that a scrubber tower located at the mine structurally failed moments after a miner traveled through the area. The agency said that four main support columns failed, causing the scrubber tower to be unstable. Fortunately, no one was injured.
To avoid such a situation, MSHA’s best practices for mine operations include:
- Periodically conduct structural inspections;
- Routinely examine metal structures for indications of weakened structural soundness, including corrosion, fatigue cracks, bent/buckling beams, braces or columns, loose/missing connectors, broken welds, and so on;
- Ensure supports are rated for the loads to which they may be subjected;
- Report all areas where indicators of structural weakness are found; and
- Maintain good housekeeping around the base of structures, columns and flanges, as well as awnings and horizontal surfaces.
Now is the time to make sure your operations are not at risks.