Plant & Equipment

Queensland mines, quarries improve safety record

While the report covers the whole of the mining industry, it does break up the different types, including the quarry industry.

During the report period, three miners lost their lives, two at surface coalmines and the third in an opal mine. There were no fatalities in quarrying.

In general, injuries to workers resulting in lost time fell while disabling injuries rose from the previous year. Days lost to injuries was also down, as was the duration rate of injuries.

One measurement that rose is the number of incidents reported and this is considered beneficial, as there was concern that not all cases were reported in the past. If incidents are not reported, then latent hazards are not being addressed.

The duration rate of injuries is a very important measure of safety and health performance, as it is a calculation of the severity of injuries, not just the number. This showed an improvement but not in quarrying where the duration rate was the worst it had been for five years, with a 98.2 per cent increase over the year before. Four major injuries caused a total of 639 lost days and contributed significantly to the lost time statistics.

Many accidents in the metalliferous mines and quarries sector occurred in and around vehicles or machinery. These were primarily caused by speed, mechanical failure, not obeying road rules and losing control of a vehicle.

High potential incidents in the mines and quarries sector related to motor vehicles increased sharply, moving from the fourth most reported to the highest reported. Conversely, electrical incidents dropped significantly and moved from the second to the fifth highest reported.

Overall, high potential incidents in quarrying were less than in previous years with 72 in 2009-10 and 68 in the 2010-11 period.

In 2010-2011, mines inspectors undertook 1512 inspections and 179 audits. The Mines Inspectorate received 107 complaints on a wide range of safety issues.

Source: Queensland Mines and Quarries Safety Performance and Health Report 2010-1011

Leave a Reply

Send this to a friend