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MINING INCIDENTS AND ALERTS

Worker dead in drilling incident at Red Dog mine

red dog mine accident

According to mine operator Teck Alaska Inc., a 47-year-old worker died Saturday (16th Jan) at the Red Dog copper and zinc mine, which located about 80 miles north of Kotzebue, northwest Alaska. No other employees or contractors were injured. The company said in a statement Sunday that “there is no ongoing safety or environmental risk.” All appropriate authorities have been notified and Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is conducting an investigation into the incident.

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MSHA reported that 47-year-old driller Dustin Thomas was lowering the mast of a production drill to pack it up. During the operation, the drill turned and caught Thomas’s leg in some equipment.

Another employee reversed the drill rotation to free Thomas’s leg. Thomas was transported to a mine clinic, where he died less than 90 minutes after the accident. He had worked at the mine for more than seven years.

The investigator is still at Red Dog Mine to determine the nature of the accident in their final report. To date, this is the sole fatality report the federal mining safety authority has filed on Red Dog.

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Image by KTOO

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