Weekly incident summary

30 August 2019  | ISR19-33 | Go to website
To report an incident call 1300 814 609 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Week ending Friday 23 August 2019
High level summary of emerging trends and our recommendations to operators.

Reportable incidents: 24
Summarised incidents: 4

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

Dangerous incident | IncNot 0035349

SummaryA light vehicle rolled onto its roof after making contact with a bund. The vehicle was being driven up a ramp, but the driver cannot recall what happened. The driver was not injured. Inspectors attended the site and determined that the most likely cause was that the driver had a micro sleep.

Recommendations to industry: Mine operators should review their fatigue policy and how it is complied with on site. Schedule 2 of the Work Health and Safety (Mines and Petroleum Sites) Regulation 2014 includes the requirement that a health control plan must address control measures for minimising the risk that a worker will be impaired by fatigue.

Dangerous incident | IncNot 0035353

SummaryA light vehicle rolled over after making contact with a centre bund. The driver said that the sun was in their eyes as they made a right-hand turn and the vehicle caught the edge of the centre bund causing the vehicle to ride up on one side and roll over.  The driver was not injured.

Recommendations to industry: Principal hazard management plans for roads or other vehicle operating areas should consider factors that may affect operator visibility or ability to control a vehicle: 
•    Fog, sunlight, storms or dust obstructions that affect lines of sight. 
•    Drivers should be reminded to travel at speeds suitable for the conditions.

Dangerous incident | IncNot 0035378

SummaryA worker suffered an electric shock from a start button on an industrial washing machine. The worker was taken to hospital for tests.
The cause of shock was ultimately identified as an accumulation of moisture on a printed circuit board, which led to a fault. The start button was in close proximity to the fault and was covered in lint.

Recommendations to industry: The electrical engineering control plan for a mine must take into account the potential for persons to contact electricity indirectly. This includes determination of the required ingress protection level for the application, and reducing the risk by using equipment with extra-low voltage control circuits.

Dangerous incident | IncNot 0035381

SummaryA Jumbo drill rig operator noticed a burning smell and hit the e-stop. When the operator dismounted the machine to investigate, he saw flames in the engine compartment. He used a handheld fire extinguisher to extinguish the fire. A rag was found in the engine bay, draped over a hose. The rag had ignited and was the source of the flames.

Recommendations to industry: Mine maintenance personnel should be vigilant when carrying out maintenance to ensure that no foreign materials are left in engine bays following maintenance.

Other publications of interest

The 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 2 August 2019, a 39-year-old equipment operator, with 16 years of experience, was killed while descending the main haul road in a fuel/lube truck.  The worker radioed that the truck’s brakes did not work and after travelling about one-and-a-half kilometres down a 7% grade, he hit a runaway truck ramp’s berm causing it to overturn. The worker was not wearing a seatbelt. 

Publication: MSHA
Mine fatality 
On 7 August 2019, a preparation plant electrician with 15 years of mining experience was electrocuted when he made contact with an energised connection of a 4160 VAC electrical circuit.  The worker was in the plant’s motor control centre adjusting the linkage between the disconnect lever and the internal components of the panel supplying power to the plant feed belt motors.
National (other, non-fatal)
Publication: DNRME (Qld)
Workers suffers flash burns MSA No 367
A mine worker recently suffered burns to the neck and arm following a flash fire, while preparing to fix a fuel tank on a loader. The loader was fitted with dual diesel tanks on each side of the rear, which were integrated into the subframe. The tanks were interconnected by a bottom feeder line and a top breather line. 
The crack being repaired was on the top of the left-hand tank. Nitrogen was introduced into the top of the right-hand tank. In order to speed up the process, the crack was being prepared for welding using an arc gouging torch, in preference to a grinder. This caused a flash fire, injuring the worker.

Publication: DNRME (QLD)
Inrush from ventilation shaft MSA No 368
An inrush occurred when developing a roadway connecting a ventilation shaft to the underground workings. When the roadway broke through into the shaft, a quantity of md and water still contained in the shaft flowed into the roadway. The face workers were retreated from the area without injury.
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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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