RSHQ issues risk reminder after Curragh incident

Resources Safety and Health Queensland (RSHQ) has made a number of safety recommendations following an incident at the Curragh Mine Complex in Queensland.

The coal mine, owned by Coronado Global Resources, produced 8.8 million tonnes in the first half of 2021 but was temporarily suspended on November 21 after a 54-year-old man lost his life.

While investigations are continuing, RSHQ said it is a timely reminder that mine personnel should ensure effective controls are in place to manage risks relating to moving equipment such as draglines.

The recommendations include ensuring persons undertaking activities are adequately trained in all relevant aspects of the mine’s safety and health management system, as well as auditing and validating operating procedures on a regular basis.

RSHQ also recommends ensuring the system provides adequate supervision for anyone undertaking work in the vicinity of operational swing boundaries of draglines, and ensuring workers are trained and made aware of the ongoing risks when working in the vicinity of mining equipment when an operator is at the controls.

Further recommendations include ensuring workers are trained in the content and application of positive communication procedures, as well as ensuring supervisors monitor compliance with site positive communication procedures.

According to a statement from RSHQ, the worker was a dragline operator undertaking cable relocation work on the ground within the operational swing boundaries of the rotating dragline.

Preliminary investigations suggest that the worker was using the cable tractor whilst the dragline was stationary, but that the worker either re-entered or remained in the operational swing boundary when the dragline became operational.

The worker was struck by the dragline propel shoe, resulting in him sustaining fatal injuries.

A statement from Coronado was issued earlier in the week following the incident, offering counselling to all affected by the event.

“The company is focussed on supporting the family of the employee and workers at Curragh, and counselling services are being made available,” the company stated.

“Coronado extends its deepest sympathies and sincere condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of the individual.”

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