All the latest in mine health and safety in NSW
Weekly incident summary
To report an incident or injury call 1300814609
Weekly incident summary - week ending 29 May 2020
37 reportable incidents, 4 summarised below

Dangerous incident | IncNot0037446

Underground coal
Principal mining hazard: Roads or other vehicle operating areas
Summary: A dolly car at an underground coal mine was travelling down the drift with three ducksbills loaded on a flattop. The front ducksbill was secured to the flattop, but detached and slid off. The second ducksbill was unsecured and also slipped off the flattop. The dolly car was about 500 metres into the drift at the time of the incident. The first ducksbill slid to the bottom of the drift (approx. 1100 metres) while the second one stopped after about 150 metres. There was no one in the drift at the time of the incident.
Comments to industry: Investigation of this incident by the Regulator is ongoing and further information may be published later. 
Procedures, relating to transporting loads via a drift conveyance, should be clear about the use of headboards and the proper securing of loads.
Operators should ensure risk assessments for dolly car operations include all known hazards and that adequate controls have been implemented for identified risks.

Dangerous incident | IncNot0037323

Dredging operation
Summary: A sand dredge sank in the river at a sand mining operation. No one was on board at the time of the incident.
Comments to industry: The cause of the incident will not be known until the dredge is recovered and examined. An initial investigation has identified the following possible causal factors:
  • The anchor rope had worn a small hole in the front right pontoon - patched in December 2019 with a temporary fix.
  • A small ingress of water continued, and a bilge pump was installed to control inflow.
  • The discharge hose from the bilge pump was routed through the top hatch on the pontoon, hence the hatch was no longer water-tight.

Serious injury | IncNot0037445

Underground coal mine
Summary: In preparation for the installation of an underground crusher, an operator was drilling a hole for a roof bolt when the drill steel snapped causing the hand-held bolter to drop. The bolter hit the operator on the side of the face and knocked him to the ground. He was briefly unconscious and sustained a laceration to his face.
Prior to this incident, other rope threaded drill steels had broken during use, but no action had been taken by the mine to determine the cause.
Comments to industry: The installation plans for the crusher were not correct and resulted in revised work plans.
Mine operators must conduct adequate change management to ensure any new risks are identified and additional controls are implemented as required.

With any equipment failure, adequate investigation must be undertaken to ensure the failure is not repeated. Mine workers must be reminded that all damage or near misses must be reported so the incident can be investigated adequately.

Serious injury | IncNot0037436

Open cut construction materials
Summary: An apprentice was injured by a falling hopper wing on a mobile impact crusher. The crusher was being prepared to float to another location and when a hydraulic cylinder was pressed out, it was noticed that it was broken. The apprentice climbed up to assist in aligning a component, when the wing dropped and hit the apprentice on the back of the head and shoulder. The apprentice sustained a broken scapula and a gash to the back of his head. 
Comments to industry: No-go zones should be identified during risk assessments for the dismantling of plant.
Under no circumstances should anyone climb on plant where securing pins and wedges have been removed during the dismantling process.
ISR20-22 | Go to website

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: MinEx NZ
Loss of control of vehicle - Fatality

An ADT dump truck, operating in a quarry, left the haul road and fell approximately 12 metres landing on the quarry bench below, fatally injuring the driver.

National (other, non-fatal)

Publication: Queensland Mines Inspectorate
Uncontrolled release of energy – Polyethylene pipe (Mines safety alert no.374)

There has been a recent increase in reported incidents of coal mine workers being struck by polyethylene pipe as a result of stored energy being released suddenly and uncontrolled. These incidents have resulted in five individual receiving a fractured lower leg in separate incidents since 31 October 2018.


Publication: DMIRS (WA)
Pressure vessel failure injures worker

In April 2020, a worker was transferring compressed air from one air receiver (pressure vessel) to a second air receiver that was mounted on a frame for transportation with a forklift. The second air receiver ruptured and broke away from the frame. Parts of the vessel struck the worker, causing an eye injury, hearing damage and other injuries.

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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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