Uranium-Mining Practices and Costs at Ten Salt Wash Lease Operations of Union Carbide Nuclear Co. Page: 5
The following text was automatically extracted from the image on this page using optical character recognition software:
selectively the Salt Wash miner breaks his rounds in a way to minimize sorting
and uses the smallest possible amount of explosive to reduce losses in ore
fines. Many lessees have found that a mortar hoe is a handy tool for cleaning
out narrow ore benches.
The small-scale miner does more planning than is apparent at first. His
plans must be flexible, as they have to be modified frequently to meet new
conditions. Although it is sometimes difficult, the miner tries to keep
enough headings in ore to assure a steady production and make maximum use of
The 5- to 10-horsepower, compressed-air-operated, double-drum scraper
hoist with a 24- to 30-inch semihoe bucket is the "workhouse" in the small
Salt Wash mine. Small 40- to 50-pound drills mounted on pneumatic legs are
used exclusively. Most Salt Wash miners prefer to use low, type-Z, C. S. Card
Manufacturing Co. end-dump mine cars of 18.5-cubic-foot capacity, which were
designed for Salt Wash mining.
Where the sandstone is sugary and poorly cemented, nearly all miners re-
port that tungsten carbide insert chisel bits lose gage quickly with much less
wear on the crown of the insert. In sandstone of this type they prefer one-
use, four-wing bits, often hard-surfaced. In ground that is harder and better
cemented, they generally favor the chisel bit; however, in fractured ground
the chisel bit tends to bind,and in ground that contains much mudstone the
water holes of the bit plug. Most miners use a four-hole burn cut to begin
Union Carbide Nuclear Co. stresses "good housekeeping" in its leased
mines. An experienced safety engineer makes routine visits to the mines to
to make sure that the operators comply with all safety laws and practices.
Federal Bureau of Mines first-aid courses are conducted for the lessees and
their employees at the various mining communities by the safety engineer, who
has been appointed a provisional instructor by the Bureau of Mines. The
courses are examined by a State mine inspector, who has been appointed a cer-
tified examiner by the Bureau of Mines.
Salt Wash mining is expensive, as the nature of the ore deposits limits
the productivity per man-shift. Mining through crooked workings and hoisting
and lowering mine cars through inclines are costly. The Salt Wash lessee can-
not always keep a permanent mine crew, often because of the uncertainty of his
ore reserves and the higher wages paid in other uranium-producing districts.
Bad roads and scarce housing also hamper getting and keeping good miners.
The 10 lease operations described in this report are believed to be a
representative cross section of the Salt Wash operations on the Colorado
Plateau. These mines are entered through vertical shafts, slopes, or adits.
When mining costs were computed the average output ranged from 70 to more than
1,000 tons of ore per month. The Hummer-Oversight operation was producing
about 2,000 tons per month in the latter half of 1957.
531185 0 -59 -z2
Here’s what’s next.
This report can be searched. Note: Results may vary based on the legibility of text within the document.
Tools / Downloads
Get a copy of this page or view the extracted text.
Citing and Sharing
Basic information for referencing this web page. We also provide extended guidance on usage rights, references, copying or embedding.
Reference the current page of this Report.
Dare, W. L. Uranium-Mining Practices and Costs at Ten Salt Wash Lease Operations of Union Carbide Nuclear Co., report, 1959; Washington D.C.. (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc170712/m1/11/: accessed March 22, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.