Risk assessment by fault tree analysis of roof and rib fall accidents in an underground hard coal mine

Direk, Cansu
Mining sector has a high rate of injury and fatality among other sectors. Roof and rib fall in underground mines is one of the most commonly encountered accident causes that results in injuries, permanent disabilities, even fatalities. Implementing effective prevention measures based on the quantitative risk assessment is an emerging issue for underground coal mines in Turkey. The main objective of this study is to determine the root causes of roof and rib fall accidents in underground coal mines by implementing quantitative risk assessment. This objective was achieved by evaluating the accidents occurred due to roof and rib falls from years 2003 to 2013 in the selected pilot research area, Turkish Hard Coal Enterprise (TTK) – Amasra Hard Coal Institution. In order to determine root causes of roof and rib falls, fault tree analysis (FTA) methodology was implemented. The methodology starts with the preprocessing of acquired data and determination of the main causes and consequences of roof and rib falls in Amasra underground coal mine. Then intermediate and basic events of fault tree were identified and fault tree for roof and rib fall accidents was generated. The risks associated with each basic event and cuts sets of fault tree were computed using ReliaSoft BlockSim-7 software. Finally, major causes of roof and rib fall accidents were determined according to the computed risks. Research findings revealed that causes with the highest static reliability importance are improper personal protective equipment (PPE), procedural errors, and improper tools. This study, as being the first implementation of FTA in underground roof and rib fall accidents, is expected to contribute to mining industry and current literature in various ways. The developed accident database could be extended further to create a national mine accident database. In future studies, the developed risk analysis methodology could be used in other mines of TTK and also in other underground coal mines to decrease the risk of roof and rib falls and consequently decreasing the injury and fatality rates. The results of this study should be considered in preparing a ground control risk assessment plan for the particular coal mine and other underground hard coal mines as well.


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Citation Formats
C. Direk, “Risk assessment by fault tree analysis of roof and rib fall accidents in an underground hard coal mine,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2015.