Weekly Toll: The Last Shift

Weekly Toll

Line worker killed by falling tree in Middletown MIDDLETOWN, Conn. (WTNH) – An Eversource subcontractor was killed in Middletown on Sunday by a falling tree, according to police. At approximately 3:17 p.m. Sunday, a subcontractor for Eversource was repairing a line on Millbrook Road in the area of 1233. As the repair was completed a tree fell on top of the lineman, causing…

“Suffocating While Alive” The Return of Black Lung

Mine worker dust black lung

Howard Berkes has published a major investigative piece for NPR/Frontline on the resurgence of black lung among coal miners. Read it or better yet, listen to it. Berkes puts most of the blame on failures of the Mine Safety and Health Administration, but is who is really at fault, the regulatory agency or the mine owners? Continue Reading

Today in Mining History: December 19, 1984 and 1907

Darr Mine Fire: Dec. 19, 1907 At 11:30 a.m., a massive explosion rocked the Darr Mine of the Pittsburgh Coal Co. near the village of Jacobs Creek, Pennsylvania, at the point at which the creek enters the Youghiogheny River above Smithton. Just one miner near the surface was able to escape the holocaust that took 239 lives.   It…

Death on the Job: 2017 Fatality Numbers Released


The Bureau of Labor Statistics today released its 2017 Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries — and it contained good news and bad news.  The good news is that workplace fatalities fell slightly, less than 1% last year from 5,190 fatal injuries reported in 2016 to 5,147 last year. The fatality rate also declined slightly from 3.6 to…

Mine Workers Sue MSHA Over Lifting Enforcement Action

mine safety

Things have been somewhat quiet lately in the world of mine safety and health. We wrote earlier about the troubling rise in black lung cases, but thankfully mining fatalities are down slightly this year after they spiked last year.  In 2018, we’ve seen 9 coal mining deaths and 16 worker deaths in meal/non-metal mines.  Last…