A new international standard released by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) classifies mining accidents by type and by cause in an effort to prevent them from happening in the future.
Developed by the ISO’s technical committee on mining, ISO 19434 presents a comprehensive mine accidents classification system that lays out a standard scheme for all factors associated with the accidents. It enables a full analysis based on both software systems or manual assessment and uses a common understandable language for communication between all parts involved in safety, health and environment issues in mines.
According to Seyed Reza Hosseini, Convenor of the working group on classification of mine accidents, the standard represents a new direction for mining industry safety.
“Until now ISO mining standards mostly looked at safety features for machinery. ISO 19434 looks at the accidents themselves, giving each accident a code that indicates its causes and consequences, said Hosseini.
The classification given in ISO 19434 allows one to identify whether accidents have occurred due to human error or other causes and gives a shared understanding on key issues.
Hosseini said the standard “defines not only the main types of accidents but, importantly, provides information about the nature of any injuries that have occurred, defining their location and to what degree personnel are affected.”