46 x 26cm signed print
"His job was to keep the conveyor belts and rollers free from the accumulation of fine coal dust that was a fire hazard in a mine. The conveyor belts moved at around 3 miles per hour and at points such as the loader end mesh guards were fitted. At the loading point the coal dropped from the conveyor, down the shoot and into the awaiting tubs then sent out to the shaft bottom.
He broke the golden rule. Never remove a guard while the conveyor was moving. His makeshift cleaning tool, a 2 foot long stick was whipped into the roller, pulling his arm out of the shoulder socket, pinning him up against the framework of the conveyor and loader end. Fortunately he fell onto a pile of fine dust that temporarily sealed the wound and prevented massive blood loss.
All conveyors, scraper chains and rope haulage were halted as was the practice in such situations.
The overman and deputies who had advance St John Ambulance training were soon on hand to administer morphine that was strategically placed around the coal mine in locked metal cabinets bricked into the wall for such events. Only the overman carried a key.
The injured man was then made as comfortable as possible on an ambulance tram and hauled the three miles to the shaft bottom by a team of volunteers where a nurse or medic would be on hand to accompany him up the shaft to the medical centre to the Ingham Infirmary by the awaiting NCB ambulance. The district, still at a standstill waiting the arrival of mine inspectors and officials to assess the situation for their report.
Once this was done the severed arm had to be removed from the conveyor rollers, wrapped in sacking and carried out of the pit over the shoulder of a willing volunteer."