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Weekly incident summary
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Weekly incident summary - week ending 14 August 2020
56 reportable incidents, 3 summarised below

Dangerous incident | IncNot0037998

Mineral sands mine
Summary: An electrician was removing an insulator from a disconnected 22kV trailing cable. When he tried to remove the second insulator, his hand came in contact with one of the phase pins and he suffered an electric shock. When the three-phase pins were tested, two read zero voltage while the third gave a reading of 108VDC. 
Subsequent testing returned readings of zero voltage on all three pins.  
Comments to industry: Mine operators should ensure that safe work procedures include the requirement to discharge any capacitive charge and verify the energy is dissipated before commencing work on electrical components.

Dangerous incident | IncNot0037966

Open cut coal mine
Summary: A worker was hit on the back of the head by the access ladder of a grader that was being repaired. The force cracked his hard hat and knocked him to the ground. He suffered a concussion and whiplash.
The ladder was stuck in the raised position due to insufficient oil in the control box. While the worker was waiting to top up the oil, the access ladder cycled down in an anticlockwise direction hitting him on the back of the head. The grader was not running at the time of the incident.
Comments to industry: This incident is under investigation and further information may be published at a later date.
The hazards associated with moving parts of plant and machinery must be identified. Controls such as safe standing zones should be established in consideration of potential system failures. No go zones must be identified and communicated to workers to ensure they remain out of the line of fire.

Dangerous incident | IncNot0037957

Open cut coal mine
Principal mining hazard: Roads and other vehicle operating areas
Summary: A light vehicle turned in front of a haul truck at an intersection, narrowly avoiding a collision. 
Video footage shows that the vehicle was extremely close to the front of the haul truck and the haul truck position 2 tyre ran over the light vehicle wheel tracks when attempting to stop. The light vehicle driver said mud on the windows obstructed his view.
Comments to industry: Vehicle operators should ensure they have clear visibility at all times by checking that windscreens. Windows and mirrors should be kept clean and free from obstructions. 
If a driver is aware of reduced visibility due to mud on windows, the driver should find a safe place to stop and address the issue rather than risk causing an incident by continuing to drive with obstructed vision.

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 24 July 2020, two miners were loading explosives from inside an aerial lift basket when the basket jolted upward into the mine roof, causing the death of one of the miners.

National (other, non-fatal)
Publication: DMIRS (WA)
Fall of ground in a development heading resulting in serious injury: SIR No.282
In April 2020, a development drill rig (Jumbo) operator and fitter were injured when a 750 kilogram rock fell from a height of about five metres from the face of an access development heading, striking both workers. The fitter suffered serious injuries.

Publication: DMIRS (WA)
Inspection and maintenance of accessway and platform gratings: MSB No.176
Since 2018, mines inspectors have raised many defects and notices related to the poor condition of accessway grating in plants at more than 60 mines. This is notable around sumps and drains, above leach tanks and in saline environments. Gratings are often corroded, deformed, inadequately secured and/or incorrectly installed. Grating supports are frequently cracked, corroded or missing.

Publication: DMIRS (WA)
Installation and maintenance of temporary generators: MSB No.177
There have been numerous incidents at mine sites involving the testing and maintenance of temporary generators, with several defects being detected.

Publication: (WA)
Working on open pit walls using rope access systems: MSB No.178
In Western Australia, personnel, including contractors, have been engaged to perform work associated with open pit wall stabilisation, wall control and geotechnical hazard remediation. Work involves personnel and specialist equipment working on or near pit walls (interim or final), using mechanical and rope access systems.
In WA, four incidents involving near miss or injuries to people working on walls have been reported since 2016. In all incidents, the consequences could have been far worse.

Publication: Queensland metals (in MinEx NZ)
Sanitiser inappropriately packaged
Hand sanitiser has been delivered to a Queensland mine site in bottles easily mistaken for water bottles. These bottles were also not of a spill proof design adding further risk.

Publication: DMIRS (WA)
Ruptured pressure vessel at demolition site – near miss; Safety alert 4/2020
An excavator operator using a hydraulic shear attachment to cut the fire suppression pipe into sections also inadvertently cut a pressurised fire extinguisher in half. 
ISR20-32 | Go to website


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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