The mining industry can be extremely dangerous, which means it’s incredibly important to be aware of any hazards that may take place. While there are industries with higher injury rates, the injuries that can occur from mining are more likely to be more severe than any other industry. At Q Safety Consultants, we offer a wide variety of all types of safety training. With both online and in-person training, you’re guaranteed to find a training that fits your business. We understand the importance of safety training, so contact us today to find out more information.
While there are various pieces of training that are mandated and required by law in certain states, MSHA (Mine Safety and Health Administration) Part 46 is required for surface miners and contractors engaged in shell dredging or employed at sand and gravel, surface stone, surface clay, colloidal phosphate, surface limestone, marble, shale, kaolin, feldspar, granite, traprock, cement, lime, sandstone, slate mines, and operations. The law also requires that miners engage in refresher courses periodically.
These pieces of training are designed to educate miners in the safety precautions that they need to know since mining can be very dangerous. Mining also makes up for a large percentage of jobs. For example, bituminous coal underground mining employs more than half of all the miners in the US and experiences the highest share of occupational injuries, illnesses, and fatalities, as compared to other industries.
While there are specific health problems that may arise with different mining types, some of the most common health hazards in the mining industry are:
- Chemical hazards
- Mineworkers are exposed to a large number of chemicals. From the chemical separation process in mining to the polymeric chemicals used in the flocculation process, chemicals are a huge potential risk to workers’ health. Burns, poisoning, and respiratory problems are all risks related to exposure to chemicals.
- Dust hazards
- Specifically coal mining, mining can result in large amounts of airborne dust particles. The most severe risk that involves dust is pneumoconiosis (black lung disease). It can also lead to silicosis, which is another lung disease that has led to the death of more than 14,000 workers in the past 50 years.
- Heat stress
- Due to the enclosed spaces that can become incredibly hot and the lack of natural air, heat stress is a very common health problem for miners. Workers are constantly exposed to high temperatures that can result in dehydration, heatstroke, and heat exhaustion.
- Musculoskeletal disorders (MSD)
- Miners are constantly lifting heavy items while reaching, bending, and pushing things all in an awkward environment. Due to this, MSD accounts for 33% of all work-related injuries and illnesses.
- Whole-body vibrations
- Whole-body vibration comes from the repeated use of machinery or operating positions that can lead to WBV, which can then lead to musculoskeletal disorders, reproductive damage in females, vision impairment, digestive problems, and cardiovascular changes.
At Q Safety Consultants, we’re your one-stop-shop for all things OSHA, MSHA, EM 385, DOT, IATA, IMDG, HAZWOPER, PEC, H2S, Fall Protection, and more. Contact us today to get started.