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Colorado Mining Fatalities

Leading causes of minor fatal accidents: 1934 to 1938

The major mine accidents in Colorado which resulted in a large number of fatalities at one time were caused by gas and dust explosions in underground coal mines. However there also were a large number of fatalities which resulted from accidents involving one or two people, Based upon the 1934 to 1938 time period, the leading cause of these small accidents in decreasing order of frequency are listed below.

Causes Underground:

  • 1. Falls of roof (rock, coal or draw slate) - the most common cause of fatalities
  • 2. Falls of face or rib
  • 3. Mine cars and mine locomotives
  • 4. Explosions of gas or coal dust
  • 5. Explosives (not including those in No. 4)
  • 6. Shaft and slope
  • 7. Electricity (not resulting in explosions)
  • 8. Suffocation from natural gases (not from mine fires and explosions)
  • 9. Mine fires (burns, suffocations, etc.)
  • 10. Roof fall due to car or machine knocking out post
  • 11. Rush of coal, rock, or gob
  • 12. Other falling material or objects (not being handled by injured worker)
  • 13. Falls of persons
  • 14. Hand tools
  • 15. Handling materials
  • 16. Stepping on nails or other sharp objects

Causes Surface (including tipple, breaker, shops & yards):

  • 1. Explosives - the most common cause of fatalities
  • 2. Mine cars and mine locomotives
  • 3. Railway cars and locomotives
  • 4. Electricity (shock or burns)
  • 5. Machinery on surface
  • 6. Falling objects
  • 7. Falls of persons
  • 8. Handling materials
  • 9. Hand tools
  • 10. Boiler explosions or bursting steam pipes

 

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Updated: June 25, 2013