OHS, Resources - Union Urges Work Halt At QLD Mines
The Queensland mining union is declaring a "safety crisis" after a 27-year old man died at a coal mine west of Gladstone, the latest in a string of worker fatalities.
CFMEU Queensland mining and energy president Steve Smyth says mine need to suspend operations for at least a day and talk very seriously about safety.
"It means stopping every operation for a period of 24 hours, sitting down with your workers and engaging them around what's going on with your mine site," said Smyth, "I don't know how many fatalities or major accidents we need to have before industry and the regulators take real action. It's trending in a really, really concerning way."
Police and ambulance services didn't immediately release many details about the death; it's believed the man was working in the pit area of the Baralaba North coal mine in the Bowen Basin on Sunday.
But it's just the latest in a series of incidents that have alarmed mining union officials and others. There have four been fatal mining incidents in Queensland in just over six months, part of six mining and quarry deaths in the past year. Also over the weekend, a man in his 50s fell ten meters at the Collinsville open-cut coal mine, sustaining back and leg injuries.
"That is six grieving families and we have had another accident with a worker in hospital with serious injuries," said Queensland Mines Minister Anthony Lynham. "I will be making it absolutely clear that this situation is unacceptable and requires action."
The Union, government officials, and companies are holding crisis talks about the situation.