OT: Building in isolated location

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warmstrong1955
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Re: OT: Building in isolated location

Postby warmstrong1955 » Tue Apr 18, 2017 11:43 am

A piece of trivia....if you add up all the powered haulage and mobile equipment related fatalities in US mines, both surface and underground, it accounts for almost half of them.
And overall, almost half the reportable incidents and accidents are equipment related as well. Neither a good statistic, but good to make a guy think!
(Part of most of my safety training spiels)

I had some friends that worked in the Locomotive shop at the late great Magma Copper in San Manuel. I got some tours in the shop. They had a bunch of Alco's....I think they were about 1500 HP.They also had some 2000 HP EMD's, and a few newer ones (newer is relative) that were 3000 HP. Several dinkies too.
That Cat EMD in the Mine Expo, was 4300 HP.
It all keeps getting bigger & bigger. I got a few rides on both the Alco's and EMD's, just to the mine & back, not to Hayden.....short trip...but impressive to say the least!
I agree Bill....neat stuff!

:)
Other Bill
Today's solutions are tomorrow's problems.

pete
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Re: OT: Building in isolated location

Postby pete » Tue Apr 18, 2017 3:02 pm

Good, I'm glad those stories had the right effect Bill.
Trees and equipment still spook me. Think I've already mentioned what happened somewhere in this thread. If I haven't I had a tree trunk whip out of the pile I was moving, blow through the front windsheild and stop maybe 8" from my chest. Logging and tree handeling takes a whole new set of skills for sure. I've been operating equipment in one way or another for almost 50 years. That was the closest I've ever come to dying.And it happened so fast I didn't have time to try and block it with the bucket.If your not 100% sure of what's going to happen I'd start a slow move first just to see how things are going to react. Even at that it's not always possible to forsee something hidden that changes everything.

Those V16 Cummins are I think rated at full power to around 3400 hp. Usual mining practice is to cut the top rpm back a bit since there easier on fuel and can then go longer between engine rebuilds. I think they detuned those to around 2700 hp for each. I was told our rope shovels had 9,000 hp electric motors in them and they'd really move the rock. 42 cubic yard rock buckets and they filled those and still were moving large amounts of rock above the bucket. Blasted rock weighs roughly 2 tons per cubic yard depending on the fracture size. So those shovels were lifting and still moving likely a lot more than 100 tons each pass. 150-190 300 ton truck loads moved every 12 hr shift for each shovel. We had naturaly fractured ground and that helps to direct the expolosives along the cracks. Lot's of areas that gave us real poor explosive results and we'd have huge rock in the dig face that we still couldn't move. They had to be dug around until they reached ground level then an air track came in, drilled and they got reblasted small enough so they could be loaded out.

In the winter I've seen lots of frozen ground so thick that even with all that HP you still couldn't break it up small enough to fit through the bucket. The worst was blasted material they'd built a haul road across and those trucks would drive the frost 15' deep. D 11 cats couldn't come close to ripping it. That had to be blasted as well. I hate winter. :-)

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seal killer
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Re: OT: Building in isolated location

Postby seal killer » Wed Apr 19, 2017 8:48 am

Pete and Bill--
Good, I'm glad those stories had the right effect Bill.


Ever since one of you wrote that tracked machines are much more stable than wheeled machines (when I was thinking of climbing the big pile of material with the Komatsu), I've been really concentrating on safety. I've made mistakes, but none of them have hurt anyone or me.

I've learned a lot. Of particular importance, I've learned to protect myself with the bucket when moving trees and piles of brush/trees. I've seen branches and trunks break and watched them lance across the work area with unbelievable speed; with killing force.

--Bill
You are what you write.

pete
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Re: OT: Building in isolated location

Postby pete » Wed Apr 19, 2017 4:29 pm

More stable yes, but even with them you can get a track machine farther into trouble. I've pulled myself up slopes so steep that if you pulled the bucket and stick back a bit too far the machine would flip over backwards. You can feel how unstable the machines getting even in the seat. I always tell anyone I'm training that if they aren't 100% sure of the situation to get out and visually check the conditions. Every single accident I've seen with a single piece of equipment involved and without a mechanical failure likely could have been prevented if the operator had done so. We all tend to get lazy though and I'm just as guilty of that. The more experience you have the more you can push the limits. You still have to know at what point your pushing them too far.

Chris Smith
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Re: OT: Building in isolated location

Postby Chris Smith » Wed Apr 19, 2017 4:34 pm

Bill,

I had a long chat with our safety engineer one day. He charted all accidents first on the calander and then to his computer. His chart showed that most serious accidents were centered about the full moon.

Chris

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warmstrong1955
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Re: OT: Building in isolated location

Postby warmstrong1955 » Wed Apr 19, 2017 5:12 pm

It's a matter of knowing the limitations of the machine, and yourself, and the two of you together.
It takes a while to get well acquainted.

This pic is from back in the day, when brakes were....sort of a luxury. They worked.....kinda....sorta.... (early 70's)
A miner was mucking the mud out of a sump, and was having problems getting into reverse. (Common problem for this particular model) He had the transmission hood up and was adjusting the shift/steering linkage.
Last heard, from the new shift boss, "Whuddya mean it won't go into %#&$#^ reverse??? Get the &^#$% outa the seat... and let me show you how to run that &@#&* mucker !!!"
Oops.jpg

The miner & the ST5A....very well acquainted.
The shift boss and the ST5A....notso much.

:)
Other Bill
Today's solutions are tomorrow's problems.

pete
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Re: OT: Building in isolated location

Postby pete » Wed Apr 19, 2017 5:59 pm

LOL, yeah rookie shift boss's. I've had to babysit a few myself. I had two of them throw there pickups into reverse without looking and back into my parked machine each within a couple of months. One tried ordering me off a vertical drop off in the middle of the night and in a blizzard simply because he thought he knew the area better than he did. Had I not got out and checked on foot because I couldn't see well enough and I would have done it. One wouldn't put a cat above me to rip the ground even after telling him 3 times I was going to get the shovel hit. A couple of hrs later I took a about a 30 ton piece of frozen ground to the front of that 5500. He was sitting right behind me when it happened and at least took the full blame for it. Blameless or not it still reflects on your operating ability with the other operators because you got a machine damaged.

And interesting statistic Chris. I don't know of any mine I've worked at do the same, but it's probably not surprising now that you've mentioned it. My now retired bil was a city cop and he was 100% certain people went a lot nuttier around the full moon as well.

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warmstrong1955
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Re: OT: Building in isolated location

Postby warmstrong1955 » Thu Apr 20, 2017 10:09 am

Oh the stories I can tell Pete.....
:)
Actually, in the underground contracting biz, most of the shift bosses's are good, and got there being good miners. Learned it the old fashioned way.
The 'big jobs'....not so much anymore.

Not sure about the full moon, but stats show that all too many incidents are caused by plain ol' carelessness, and people taking shortcuts.
Whole lot of folks don't need a full moon to be nutty!
:)
Other Bill
Today's solutions are tomorrow's problems.

curtis cutter
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Re: OT: Building in isolated location

Postby curtis cutter » Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:01 am

After 45 years of being an EMT, and after seeing many decapitated and fatally crushed drivers, I have only two words for people who run equipment with ROPS.

Seat Belts.

spro
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Re: OT: Building in isolated location

Postby spro » Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:17 pm

This thread is astounding! I've never read such experience with this Giant equipment. That's all I can say, gargantuan compared to anything I may operate. Curtis mentions something which I've also wondered about. If a smaller loader backhoe starts to tip sideways, the ROPS does its thing BUT say a guy isn't as spry as he was. The inclination is to try and launch over the high side, while the machine is tipping but there could be a snag...
Much of these tractors don't have belts or seats which could adequately contain the operator's weight upside down. The other thing is being burned alive as the fuel tank empties or is ignited by the battery.
So I wonder if seat belts are always correct.

pete
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Re: OT: Building in isolated location

Postby pete » Fri Apr 21, 2017 5:15 pm

I'd agree Curtis is technically correct and as I said with almost 25 years in mining and almost 50 operating equipment there's been no deaths where I've worked. A couple at Newmont but that was before I worked there. However I know of and have talked to the operators involved where wearing that seat belt would have gotten them killed. One crane operator survived because he slid down in the seat far enough as the cab got crushed but his head got squeezed so tight he couldn't move any further. They had to cut around him and cut the cab away to get him out. He said a seat belt would have gotten his head crushed. Another had the brakes fail as he backed away from the dig face while loading trucks on a narrow road above a steep slope. He got out the off side AFTER the loader had fully cleared the road and was on it's way to going over a 1,000 ft down the slope. That loader was pretty much a twisted ball of scrap when they recovered it. There was no doubt that he thought he'd be dead if he had been wearing his seat belt. I still don't know how he got that window open and still get over the hoist and tilt levers that fast. On that loader that large hinged window was never designed as a way to get in or out of the machine. Another had the brakes fail on the 35 ton Cat water truck on a 14 % grade and he bailed before it went over the side of the road. It got him a heel bone that will never be the same but he's alive.In many very dangerous areas I want the option of bailing right now if things don't go quite as planned. Excavators unless it's special ordered or they have a logging package don't usually come with a ROPS. Some equipment like those shovels there's no way to build anything strong enough. There's times those ROPS will save you along with a seat belt and others where your better off getting out right now. I've worked up to 1000' above the pit floor level on what's left of the benches. You can see what I mean about those benches in Bills picture behind the crushed mechanics truck. You can also see where parts of those benches have failed. But in places up on those benches it's so narrow part of the outside track is in thin air. It's not uncommon to have parts of those benches break off sometimes and that's without the added weight and vibration of the machine moving.

Company and the Mine Regulations Act is to always wear that seat belt. If you've got the experience to be even doing those jobs then you better have enough self preservation to know when it's a good idea to ignore the rules. And those rules only fit the normal day to day jobs. When they made them the people who did so didn't have the hands on experience to judge that there not always a good idea in every situation. Lot's of operators have been killed by jumping on the wrong side, lots who would have been saved with a seat belt, but most highly experienced operators won't wear them for the exact same reasons I don't. On the highway driving a car or even an 18 wheeler then yes I never move without one.

With todays equipment the seats and belts are tested and rated exactly the same as anything built for the automotive industry. Equipment burns FAR better than most would think. All that oil, fuel, rubber hoses, even the paint lights up like you wouldn't believe. One single oil supply line to the turbo breaking is more than enough to get things going. But for the operator getting out if he's not trapped in the machine most fires take awhile. I can't remember when I ran the last piece of equipment that didn't have at least one turbo on it so there's always that chance. But I usually keep an eye on those turbo flex lines as part of the daily checks. A lot of the real big equipment has on board fire suppresion with an emergency button in the cab and you just pull the pin and slam the button down. Even with that there's hundreds of pieces of equipment that gets burned to the ground every year. That Hitachi 5500 had an emergency chain ladder you threw out of the cab and used if the other stairways and ladders were blocked by fire. It's just too high to jump without breaking at least both your legs or worse. With road graders most times I'll stand up while pulling material from the ditch line. It's easier to see and because your machine is tilted way over into the ditch it's more comfortable to stand than sit. Those graders are designed so you can do that and for those reasons. They all come with seat belts now but it's obvious they don't work while standing up. Operating any of this equipment could have thousands of variables over just one shift and lots just aren't that obvious because you'd never think that perfect combination that causes the accident would ever happen. It's the ones you can't plan for are what keeps me from wearing a seat belt. And they can happen far faster and more than I like. Maybe I've been real lucky, but I've never been injured or injured anyone else while operating a machine, nor done any serious damage like laying one on it's side. But I've sure seen lots of damage done by some others. Some were caused from mechanical failures so they weren't to blame. Others were just being in the wrong place at the right time or sometimes a few had vapor lock of the brain. :-)

spro
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Re: OT: Building in isolated location

Postby spro » Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:07 pm

Well Pete, I wish I could remove my replies here so these recounts stand unadulterated. You may know I have deep respect for you and everyone who knows and operated -SO Many EARTH MOVING Equipment. Awesome responsibilities along every moment and to do this took lots, I mean LOTS of knowledge and commitment and well worn skills. It is refreshing. It is knowledge and it is even more than that.
A dude can complain about a leaking cylinder in a stabilizer and you could crush him with knowledge but you and warm bill and Everyone in this thread/topic are so helpful to relate the various instances where things could go awry. It is that your concern for the well-being of others has transferred to the readers of this Board. I read it, I see it and about time to mention it. Thanks All.


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