Coalminer faces $1.5 million fine after truck collision
Maules Creek Coal is facing prosecution from the NSW Resources Regulator for contravening section 32 of the Work Health and Safety Act 2011, following a collision involving two trucks at the mine in April 2018. The mine also allegedly failed to comply with a health and safety duty under section 19 of the Act. The Category 2 offence has a maximum penalty of $1.5 million, with the matter set for mention in the NSW District Court in Sydney on 10 February 2020.
The incident occurred when a service truck and a large haul truck collided at a major four-way intersection, resulting in a worker sustaining serious injuries to his back, shoulder and wrist that required transportation to hospital for treatment. Resources Regulator mine safety inspectors carried out an investigation to determine what caused the collision, with preliminary inquiries revealing that the intersection traffic control rules were changed the day before the accident. The mine operator is cooperating with the investigation.
In response to the incident, mines and petroleum site operators are reminded to identify hazards and manage the risks to health and safety associated with the movement of mobile plant, as outlined in the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 and the Work Health and Safety (Mines and Petroleum Sites) Act 2013. Mine operators must ensure that mobile plant is safe to operate, and provide training and information about the plant and road conditions, to ensure safe operation of the plant. Changes to traffic control rules must undergo a risk assessment before being communicated to workers. It is also the responsibility of mine operators to ensure that workers have received adequate training in the safe use of mobile plant. Appropriate warning signs or barriers should also be installed, to inform road users of any changes.
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