MSHA: Mining deaths decline in 2011

January 11, 2012

Arlington, VA – A total of 37 miners died on the job in 2011 – the second lowest tally since data was first collected in 1910, the Mine Safety and Health Administration announced Jan. 5.

Of those deaths, 21 occurred at coal mines and 16 at metal/non-metal mines in 2011, compared with 48 at coal mines and 23 at metal/non-metal mines the year before, according to preliminary figures (.pdf file).

Incidents involving machinery were the top cause of death. Kentucky had the most mining deaths (8), followed by West Virginia and Ohio, while other coal-producing states such as Pennsylvania, Alabama, Illinois and Utah reported zero fatalities.