Weekly incident summary

6 September 2019  | ISR19-34 | Go to website
To report an incident call 1300 814 609 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Week ending Friday 30 August 2019
High level summary of emerging trends and our recommendations to operators.

Reportable incidents: 25
Summarised incidents: 4

This incident summary provides information on reportable incidents and safety advice for the NSW mining industry.

Dangerous incident | IncNot 0035398

SummaryA damaged continuous miner cable arced when a worker picked it up to move it. The continuous miner had previously tripped and the fault was reset. Upon repowering the miner and beginning the flit, an operator went to move the cable and there was an arcing event.

Recommendations to industry: It is crucial that electrical engineers know, understand and maintain electrical protection settings. 
Mines must have systems in place to complete inspections routinely as well as after any identified fault. Mine operators should also review their preventative maintenance schemes for electrical cables to identify defects that could lead to an arcing incident. The review should include: 
  • inspections for cable and sheathing damage 
  • lifecycle management (age of replacement) for cables.

Dangerous incident | IncNot 0035400

SummaryAn operating dozer has pushed over onto a grade and has lost traction and become stuck. 
The operator has underestimated the grade and, combined with the hard and slippery material, he has not been able to get enough traction to reverse. 
The operator removed himself from the machine and a recovery plan was developed.

Recommendations to industry: Mine operators need to identify risks associated with working near a steep drop-off when combined with hard and slippery floor conditions. Dozer operators should not be exposed to these risks when pushing shot ground. The risks must be assessed, and suitable controls must be implemented to eliminate or minimise the risks. Pre-task risk assessments (such as JSAs) should be considered as a minimum.

Dangerous incident | IncNot 0035411

SummaryA contracting electrical company was conducting a high voltage test on a DC4100 shovel inside the machine house when an employee on the ground got an electric shock from the cable reeler. 

Recommendations to industry: Schedule 2 (3) of the Work Health and Safety (Mines and Petroleum Sites) Regulation 2014 clearly sets out the requirements for an electrical control plan, including:
  • specific procedures for the use of electrical test instruments
  • procedures that detail the control measures to prevent persons from inadvertently contacting energised parts of electrical plant and electrical installations 
  • determining if electrical equipment is energised before electrical work is carried out.

Serious incident | IncNot 0035430

SummaryWhile reversing a continuous miner, the rib protection became jammed on a rib bolt causing the rib protection to deflect and strike the operator in the head. Before the incident, the continuous miner was driven off-centre for approximately 50 metres, including ‘over’ correction. No corrective action had been taken.

Recommendations to industry: Mine operators should review procedures that address how their development roadways are driven on centre.
Deputies and undermanagers should record when the continuous miner is not on centre and record any corrective action taken.

Other publications of interest

These incidents are included for your review. The NSW Resources Regulator does not endorse the findings or recommendations of these incidents. It is your legal duty to exercise due diligence to ensure the business complies with its work health and safety obligations.

International (fatal)

Publication: MSHA
Mine fatality
On 20 August 2019, a 20-year-old miner with 27 weeks of mining experience was fatally injured when he fell down a shaft to the cement floor below. The miner was working with another miner, unloading a refuse kettle attached to an electric hoist, when he went over the unguarded edge of the shaft.
International (other, non-fatal)
Publication: MinEx NZ
Another rollover
An ADT loaded with rock was travelling down a quarry haul road when the truck started to accelerate. The operator applied the brake, but the ADT did not slow down. In an attempt to slow the truck down, the operator drove up an embankment to his left but this only diverted the truck back onto the haul road where it slid to the right and came to rest on a windrow.
National (other, non-fatal)
Publication: DNRME (Qld)
Use of compressed air for cleaning MSB No 183
In 2017, about 50 percent of respirable dust and respirable crystalline silica (RCS) exceedances that occurred in surface coal mines related directly to the use of compressed air for cleaning down enclosures and equipment during maintenance activities. Approximately 33 per cent of all exceedances, related specifically to blowing out of high voltage (HV) cabinets in electric drive trucks or blowing out motor-generator sets in dragline houses.
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You can find all our guidance and incident related publications (that is, safety alerts, safety bulletins, incident information releases, weekly incident summaries and investigation reports) on our website:

*While the majority of incidents are reported and recorded within a week of the event, some are notified outside this time period. The incidents in this report therefore have not necessarily occurred in a one week period. All newly recorded incidents, whatever the incident date, are reviewed by the Chief Inspector and senior staff each week and summarised in this report. For more comprehensive statistical data refer to our Safety Performance Measures Reports and our Business Activity Reports
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