Resources - Investigations Follows Mining Deaths
Queensland will have two parallel investigations after the death of a mining worker over the weekend, which has caused immeasurable grief to the man's family and tension between the unions, the industry, and the state government.
On Sunday, 27-year old Jack Gerdes was crushed to death in an accident with an excavator at Golding's Baralaba North Coal Mine. His was the sixth death in the past year and the second in just two weeks. A GoFundMe campaign has been set up by Mr. Gerdes' devastated colleagues to help his family offset the costs for his funeral.
The page says that Mr. Gerdes was "always up for a laugh or a chat. He touched so many people with his loyalty, compassion and dry sense of humor," and, "He always had a smile and will be missed greatly."
QLD Minister for Mines Anthony Lynham announced that forensic structural engineer Sean Brady would examine all fatal incidents in Queensland mines since 2000. This probe was going to be limited to coal mines at first, but now is being expended to include mineral mine and quarry incidents and all fatal incidents this year.
Also, the University of Queensland (UQ) is reviewing QLD's mining health and safety legislation to ensure it is relevant to current and mining technologies and practices. UQ will consult with industry, unions, mines inspectors, and legal experts for this review.
Queensland Government has called another emergency meeting on Wednesday involving government officials, mining companies, mine inspectors, unions, and resource sector bodies to discuss the safety crisis.