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Document ID (ISN)111582
CIS number 11-0167
ISSN - Serial title 1077-3525 - International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health
Year 2009
Convention or series no.
Author(s) Zubieta I.X., Brown G., Cohen R., Medina E.
Title Cananea copper mine - An international effort to improve hazardous working conditions in Mexico
Bibliographic information Jan.-Mar. 2009, Vol.15, No.1, p.14-20. Illus. 16 ref.
Internet access Cananea_copper_mine.pdf [in English]
Abstract A team of international occupational safety and health professionals evaluated the working conditions and health status of miners at a giant open-pit copper mine in Cananea, Mexico. Workers in the ore processing plants were exposed to levels of crystalline silica 10 times the Mexican regulatory limit, high levels of acid mist and noise, and numerous safety hazards, including unguarded machinery and malfunctioning 10- and 15-ton cranes. Lung function testing and interviews with physicians showed a substantial percentage of miners with adverse respiratory symptoms including shortness of breath (46%), wheezing (12%), coughing (12%) and elevated sputum production (10%). The mine owner, Grupo Mexico, violated Mexican law by failing to conduct an industrial hygiene survey sufficient to identify, evaluate and control health hazards including exposure to mineral dust (including silica), acid mists, airborne solvents, high noise levels, high vibration levels and extreme temperatures.
Descriptors (primary) Mexico; opencast work; conditions of work; state of health; copper mining
Descriptors (secondary) silica; airborne dust; labour-management relations; respiratory impairment; pulmonary function; safety consultants; role of management; safety checks; plant safety and health organization; threshold limit values; enforcement; role of workers' organizations; international cooperation; mechanical hazards; disobeying safety instructions
Document type D - Periodical articles
Subject(s) Mines and quarries
Broad subject area(s) General safety, health and conditions of work
Browse category(ies) Mining and quarrying
Labour inspection
OSH in developing countries