All the latest news in mine health and safety in NSW
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28 November 2019
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Limited seating available - register today to secure your spot

Join us at our inaugural Mining Engineering Manager Safety Seminar (3-4 December 2019) as we focus on stepping safely into the future and the challenges and solutions facing mine managers in implementing change management and adopting new technology.

This seminar will bring together case studies from Mining Engineering Managers who are implementing new technology and the lessons learned on their journey to date.

For more details see the full agenda.

Don't miss out - Register online today!

Three possible dust disease cases being investigated

We are currently investigating three new cases of possible dust disease.

Chief Inspector Garvin Burns said all three workers were detected through health surveillance screening under the NSW WHS framework. Two have been diagnosed with the condition pneumoconiosis.

Over the past 12 months, we have undertaken 45 targeted assessments and inspections at NSW mines and quarries as part of a major compliance campaign to ensure appropriate dust controls were in place to minimise exposure risks to workers.

Coal workers pneumoconiosis and silicosis are preventable diseases if appropriate dust control, atmospheric monitoring and worker monitoring measures are in place at mines.

Current and former coal workers are encouraged to contact Coal Services Health on (02) 6571 9900 to arrange a medical if they have any concerns over their wellbeing.

Click here for further information and resources

Report highlights common dust hazard management issues

Our recently published Targeted intervention program (TIP) report on respirable dust in quarry operations summarises the findings of assessments undertaken in relation to the hazard of respirable dust in NSW quarry operations, which started in September 2019 and involved 24 mines.

The TIP process identified many common issues around the approach taken by the sites to manage the hazard of dust. It also highlighted broader issues that are common across mine sites associated with the process of developing, implementing and reviewing the risk assessments, management plans, and procedures.

The Regulator expects that all mines will review their procedures and practices in consideration of the findings from this report.
Download the full report

Safety bulletin:

Hoist rope unravels over head sheave

A person-riding gemstone hoist winch rope was found with the inner strand of the rope protruding from the rope lay in two places. This condition reduced the strength of the rope which may have caused it to break and injure people, on or under the conveyance.

For more information on this safety issue and recommendations to industry, download the full safety bulletin using the link below.
Read the full Safety bulletin: Gemstone hoist rope
Visit the safety bulletin archive

Final workshop on practising certificates

Thursday 5 December 2019, Newcastle Mines Rescue Station, Argenton

Note: this workshop was rescheduled from 12 November due to fire emergencies.
If you have previously registered you DO NOT need to re-register. 

The workshop will cover:
  • how and when to apply for a practising certificate
  • how the maintenance of competence scheme works
  • what records and evidence you must keep for the learning you claim
  • how auditing will be carried out for holders.
People who attend are encouraged to bring their application or records for maintenance of competence to discuss.
Click here for further information and workshop registration
Please note: people applying for or holding a Quarry Manager with conditions practising certificate for a specific mine location (previously a Production Manager Permit) should instead attend a Small Mines Workshop at dates announced.

2019 Health and safety roadshow wrapping up

We have been holding a health and safety roadshow for small mines and quarries across NSW during October, November and December 2019.

The final three roadshow events for 2019 are:

  • 10 December: Ballina Byron Islander Resort, Ballina - Register
  • 11 December: Wentworth Grande Resort, Wentworth - Register
  • 12 December: Panthers Port Macquarie, Port Macquarie - Register

The roadshow provides information on health, safety, and topics, such as learning from disasters, quarry manager practising certificates, mine site welding practices, emergency management and learnings from recent incidents. Download the roadshow agenda [PDF, 89kb].

If you have previously registered you DO NOT need to re-register.  However, there are still limited places available if you haven't registered yet.

Click here for event information and registration

Review of mining and petroleum health and safety laws

The NSW Government will undertake a review of mining and petroleum work health and safety laws and regulations next year.

NSW Resources Regulator Director Regulatory Programs Tony Linnane said the laws are due for review as the Work Health and Safety (Mines and Petroleum Sites) Act 2013 and Work Health and Safety (Mines and Petroleum Sites) Regulation 2014 have been in place for five years, meaning the Act is due for review and the regulation is shortly due for automatic repeal.

The Review is due to deliver a final report to the NSW Deputy Premier the Hon John Barilaro MP by 1 November 2020.

Click here for further information

Extractive sites in the thick of it

We extend our thoughts to those people on the North Coast who have been experiencing the ferocity of recent and ongoing bushfires.

The catastrophic conditions are entering their second month and a number of quarry sites have had first-hand experiences with the fires.

We are currently aware of at least 15 sites that have been directly affected by the fires and many more that are in close proximity.

To date, there has been some equipment and infrastructure losses, but thankfully no injuries or situations where workers were in imminent danger.

We encourage all mine operators to remain vigilant, enact their bushfire management plans and STAY SAFE!
Two excavators lost in recent fires at Mt Zion Quarry

Release 8 open for public comment

Safe Work Australia is evaluating the Workplace exposure standards for airborne contaminants to ensure they are based on the highest quality evidence and supported by a rigorous scientific approach.

Release 8 is now open for public comment. Please note that this release includes chemicals that were deferred from previous releases as well as chemicals that do not currently have an Australian workplace exposure standard. 

Public comment will close on 20 December 2019.
Click here for further information and to provide your comments

Work-related fatalities continue to decline 

Safe Work Australia has released the Work-related Traumatic Injury Fatalities Australia 2018 report, which provides the latest detailed national statistics on all workers and bystanders fatally injured through work-related activity.

The report shows that over the last decade, the fatality rate has more than halved with 1.1 worker fatalities per 100,000 workers in 2018.

The most common causes of worker fatalities in 2018 were:

  • vehicle collisions (44 fatalities)
  • being hit by a moving object (24 fatalities)
  • falls from a height (18 fatalities).
Read more: Work-related Traumatic Injury Fatalities Australia 2018
Further contact info:
Resources Regulator | Phone: 1300 814 609

Regional NSW, Resources Regulator
516 High St
Maitland, New South Wales 2320

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