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Description:This historic image, provided by the Center for Disease Control's (CDC), National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), depicted two miners inside a coal mine as they were operating a mechanized coal bin loader. The loader was excavating raw ore from the walls of the mine shaft, and then dumping the ore into a wooden railcar. Of importance, was the fact that neither miner was wearing protective breathing gear, which would have filtered the dust-laden air prior to inhalation by the miners. Due to the inescapable presence of airborne coal dust in the small confines of a mine, miners are predisposed to the long-term negative health effects of this profession such as “black lung disease”, or “coal-workers’ pneumoconiosis” (CWP). Today, the Federal government’s stringent regulations on the level of coal dust permissible in the air of a coal mine, and the requisite use of filtered breathing devices, has dramatically lowered the number of cases of black lung disease.
The NIOSH Historic Photo Collection began as the “picture file” of the Industrial Hygiene Division of the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS), c. 1930-1960. It is a unique collection of mid-20th Century images of American workers and workplaces and documents occupational safety and health research of that era. The collection consists of approximately 1,000 original photographs and schematic drawings.
High Resolution: Click here for hi-resolution image (5.28 MB)
Content Providers(s):CDC/ Barbara Jenkins, NIOSH
Creation Date:
Photo Credit:
Links:United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
CDC – Nat. Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) – About NIOSH
CDC Organization
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Copyright Restrictions:None - This image is in the public domain and thus free of any copyright restrictions. As a matter of courtesy we request that the content provider be credited and notified in any public or private usage of this image.