Mining is arguably the most dangerous industry. More accidents and injuries occur in the mining profession than any others. There are a variety of ways the industry can become safer for its employees, here we take a look at 10 ways accidents and injuries can be prevented.
10. Decrease Temperature
Mines are intensely hot environments, when working in these conditions accidents are more likely to happen. Using fan systems in deep mines means miners are less likely to suffer from heat stroke and heat exhaustion.
9. Service Equipment
Mining equipment is already dangerous to use, when these tools aren't working correctly accidents are more likely to happen. Having this machinery serviced regularly prevents the equipment from breaking or causing problems. Safety equipment such as hard hards also needs to be serviced to make sure in the event of an accident it well protects the workers.
8. Extract Dust
Coal dust is one of the biggest risks to workers within the industries, when this dust is inhaled it can cause a variety of lung problems. Using extraction methods such as fans and vacuum systems allows for these environments to have improved air quality.
7. Increase Training
Training on the job can prevent accidents and injuries. Having a workforce that knows how to spot when a possible hazard is arising can prevent it, for example when miners are trained to see the signs of a cave-in this then prevents workers from using this area of the mine till it is safe. First aid training does not make mines safe but can prevent problems from becoming fatal.
6. Prevent Incorrect Lifting
Lifting commonly causes injuries within all industries, not just mining. Lifting injuries occur when people lift objects or equipment which is too heavy and when lifting is done incorrectly. Back and spinal cord injuries are the most harmful which happen from lifting, as well as accidents that happen from dropped items.
5. Improve Ventilation
Lack of ventilation decreases the safety of mining in a range of ways. Mining produces vast amounts of dust and toxic fumes, these are harmful for mine workers some can even cause death if left undetected. Some of these fumes are also flammable which can lead to explosions, taking these fumes out of the mines can create an environment which is safer for employees.
4. Close Unused Mines
Abandoned mines are a risk to the public and the environment, these structures are not safe and can pose a hazard for local people. These also disrupt the environment because of the toxicity of the water and fumes that mines leave behind, this makes them inhabitable to plant and animal life.
3. Increase Visibility
Underground mines are typically dark environments regardless of whether or not it is night, this means workers often spend the majority of their time at work in low light. These types of conditions can cause eye strain for employees which can cause a decline in vision. Dark environments also typically are more prone to accidents as workers can not see what they are doing.
2. Protective Wear
Protective wear is already used within the mining industry. These types of workplaces use dangerous equipment which without the right protective gear can be extremely harmful, it is important that protective wear is checked and serviced as regularly as possible to insure workers are at lowest risk of accidents.
1. Decrease noise and vibration
Vibrations in underground mines happen because of the equipment that is used, this can cause side effects for workers. The vibrations also have the potential to cause cave-ins if the structure isn't strong enough. Reducing noise within caves also helps prevent collapses and prevents miners from developing hearing loss. When underground mines are loud it is harder for miners to hear instructions leading to more accidents.