BHP, Komatsu promote data analysis to identify best work practices

The South Flank site. Image: BHP

Mining industry leaders have highlighted data analysis as the key to maintaining on-site safety and reducing serious injuries in the workplace.

Speaking at this year’s Austmine conference, Komatsu’s business transformation general manager Todd Connolly and senior mining engineer Melinda Court, BHP’s Western Australian iron ore South Flank maintenance manager Lorraine Sabbouh and group health safety and environment officer Rob Telford hosted the Creating Value Together: Leveraging the Power of Data for Inclusion and Safety presentation.

Telford said BHP had not had a fatality at its operations for more than two years.

“That was a milestone that we didn’t meet with celebration but more with sombre reflection that we were doing something right,” Telford said.

“Safety has been at the core of us for a very long time. We measure and monitor all incidents as they happen in real time and we use that data to assess how we can prevent any possible incidents.”

Sabbouh said BHP had worked to get frontline information from its machines in the field.

“We looked really hard to find something that could do that in the marketplace and we couldn’t find anything that would tick all the boxes,” she said.

“So we went from a whiteboard to a red-box prototype in about six weeks. It then took us about eight weeks to get the red-box prototype onto our equipment at South Flank.

“That allowed out workers to get that data into their hands remotely.”

Court said Komatsu’s Tune Safe technology was also enabling the company to collect data remotely.

“Tune safe allows our workers to safely collect raw data from the work site remotely and allows us to use that data to maximise safety in the workplace,” she said.

“This way we can protect our workers and while maximising our output and collecting the relevant data.”

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