Mine watercart loses control

The New South Wales Resources Regulator has encouraged mine operators to ensure their traffic control devices work correctly after a watercart lost control at a mine site.

The incident occurred when a watercart passed through the site’s wheel wash controller towards the weigh bridge by descending down an asphalt ramp.

When the watercart began spraying the ramp to remove dirt and silt build-up, the operator lost control.

The operator attempted to brake and steer the watercart into the bank but was unable to stop, causing it to collide with a truck and dog trailer on the weighbridge.

According to the Regulator, the incident occurred due to the operator assuming the truck was exiting the weighbridge when he began driving down the asphalt ramp, while the traffic control lights for the ramp were inoperable at the time.

No injuries occurred due to the incident.

The Regulator has encouraged vehicle operators to seek positive communication and not assume the movement of another vehicle.

In May, the NSW Resources Regulator introduced an awareness campaign for the risks associated with heavy mining equipment collisions.

NSW Resources Regulator chief inspector Garvin Burns said mine operators are introducing new technology, equipment upgrades and procedural improvements to training.

“Near miss incidents involving vehicles have the potential to seriously injure or kill, due to the sheer size of the equipment typically involved,” Burns said.

“With the cooperation of mine operators, teams of inspectors will be visiting 80 sites in eight days and addressing all shifts.

“We focus heavily on ensuring mine operators provide a safe work environment and will always do so, however this activity is focussed on reminding mine workers of the risk and that they also have an obligation to look after the safety of themselves and their workmates.”

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