Uranium A Common Mineral in Wyoming

Pumpkin Buttes and Uranium Fever, Wyoming’s Cultural Geology Guide when 1951 Prospectors Arrived

Uranium Deposits in the Powder River Basin in Wyoming

Pumpkin Buttes are located in the Powder River Basin of Wyoming. They contain uranium created from the ash of volcanic eruptions some 50 million years ago. This is the site where in 1951 J.D. Love first discovered uranium in a Wyoming sedimentary basin. Love’s discovery led to uranium fever: Prospectors and ranchers postured for potential stakes. What historian T.A. Larson calls “the complex pattern of rights to land and minerals” in Wyoming led to confusion in all directions. See the latest video on Pumpkin Buttes, a program of the Wyoming Cultural Geology Guide.

WYO-DOG  Geology in Wyoming Database

The Wyoming Database of Geology (Wyo-Dog) was created to catalogue samples for this study as well as other mineral investigations. Geologists can use this database to querry sites for further exploration. One query of the database indicated that samples containing at least five times the average crustal abundance of REEs (a measurement suggestive of economic REEs) showed 20 sites in Wyoming at or above this amount. The database includes all elemental analyses along with brief write-ups and photographs of most samples and sites. The WSGS is in the process of creating a website version of this database for the public to access.

mineral wealth of Wyoming

North America by NASA

wyoming geology

Prairie on the high plains of the Rocky Mountains, and Yellowstone/Tetons National Parks

Workplace Deaths Rise In Wyoming

Workplace Deaths Rise In Wyoming

courtesy Wyoming Highway Patrol

The State released the third annual report on Work-related Fatal & Non-Fatal Injuries. The report contains analysis and trends in workplace accidents and deaths in Wyoming for the year 2014 and is accompanied by a 2014 Employment Demographic Profile.

The Occupational Epidemiologist statistics reports 34 workplace deaths in the State of Wyoming in 2014. Twenty-six fatalities were reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries in 2013.

“I know the pain a family goes through when a loved one does not return home from work,” Governor Matt Mead said. “I am concerned about the increased fatalities in Wyoming. Wyoming has taken steps to improve workplace safety – hiring extra OSHA inspectors, gathering data to determine the causes of workplace incidents and offering businesses incentives for taking preventative action. More work needs to be done so those in the workplace return home safe to their families.”

About half of all 2014 occupational fatalities in Wyoming were due to transportation events. This is consistent with previous years. Factors contributing to transportation fatalities include driving too fast for road conditions, driver fatigue and failure to spot a person behind a backing vehicle.

Industries with the highest injury claims rates in 2014 include Manufacturing, Construction and Natural Resources and Mining, which includes Agriculture and Oil and Gas Extraction.

“Wyoming’s high work-related fatality rate is at least partly influenced by the proportion of the state’s workforce engaged in high-risk employment,” State Occupational Epidemiologist Meredith Towle said.

Two DWS programs monitor workplace-related deaths: the State Occupational Epidemiologist’s count of workplace deaths, and the federal CFOI program. Differences in program confidentiality rules, along with access to federal investigatory information means that the two strategies will likely produce different counts of workplace deaths. The programs have two different goals: the State-run program allows for a more detailed look at workplace deaths; while the CFOI program allows for the collection of national data across states. The CFOI report will be released on September 17, 2015.