Best Mining Story: A Safety Share beyond the mine site

Gary Knobbe, Field Service Technician, Bald Mountain, shares a story that reminds us that being aware of safety isn’t just for a mine site, but also something you take home with you.

“Earlier this year, I was returning to the Bald Mountain mine in Nevada from my home in southern Idaho, via Highway 93. While I had driven this route countless times before, this night was particularly cold and the road was especially slick.

Around 10:15 p.m., I noticed debris in my lane and faint tire tracks veering off the side of the road. I decided to slow down and look into the situation – and it’s a good thing I did.

I saw a red Dodge Durango flipped upside down in a 40-foot embankment off the highway and immediately called 911 to report the accident. I then proceeded to climb down the embankment where I found a 72 year-old man, dressed in light clothing. His first response to me was that he “thought he was going to die.” Visibility was poor, it was late at night, and he feared no one would know he was stuck on the side of the road and needed help. He also told me he was tired and cold and that it took all of his energy just to unlatch the seatbelt. I retrieved some clothing from the man’s vehicle and loosely covered him to keep him warm while we waited for the first responders.

The next time you’re driving in adverse conditions, remember to drive appropriately for the conditions and to bring the right clothing and supplies. And, make sure to double check your seatbelt. Without it, this driver’s story could have ended very badly. You can buy parts, buy metal, but you can’t buy your life back.

If you run into a situation on the road that you think could be a sign of someone in danger, consider stopping to make sure everyone is okay. After all, safety is crucial not only at work, but also at home, and everywhere in between. You never know where you’ll be when you save someone’s life.”

Thank you to Gary for exemplifying Outstanding Corporate Citizenship at work and in the community. Gary won the site’s highest honour, a level four award, in their employee recognition program.