Date of Graduation

1985

Document Type

Dissertation/Thesis

Abstract

For the years 1975, 1978 and 1979, 1266 electrical accidents in the coal mining industry have been identified from accident reports on file at MSHA Health and Safety Analysis Center, Denver, Colorado. The number of reported electrical accidents each year continues to remain high when compared to other industries. This dissertation's objective is to develop and apply an analytical technique to the coal mine power system which could identify methods to reduce the number of electrical accidents. A safety evaluation technique is developed by integrating preliminary hazard analysis, operating hazard analysis, failure mode, effect and criticality analysis, event tree analysis and accident report analysis. This technique can identify potential hazards in a system initiated by component failure and/or human error, qualitatively rank the hazards based on accident data, and can be used as a tool in evaluating design and/or procedural methods (countermeasures) to control or mitigate the effects of the hazards. Application of this technique to a representative model of a coal mine distribution power system identified six countermeasures that impacted a majority of the electrical accidents. Also, the results indicated that human error and poor design directly contributed to more accidents than component failures. However, component failures do result in increased exposure of maintenance personnel to electrical hazards present in the system. Safety design criteria consisting of 37 recommendations based on event trees developed in the evaluation process and a literature review are defined. These criteria are basic guidelines for designers, manufacturers, and operators of coal mine power equipment to employ to minimize electrical hazards present in the mine power system.

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