The Western Australian Government has passed a bill in State Parliament that will see the permanent closure of the former asbestos mining town of Wittenoom.
The Queensland Government and Heart of Australia have developed a mobile health unit for the early detection of mine dust lung diseases.
Legislative changes and community pressure across Australia are combining to place airborne dust pollution and dust-related lung disease firmly on the national agenda over the next 12 months.
New South Wales plans to implement an independent review of health surveillance in the coal sector due to the re-emergence of dust diseases across other mining jurisdictions in Australia.
A mobile plant operator at the Maules Creek coal mine in New South Wales has been diagnosed with a lung disease after working in the mining and non-mining sectors for more than 35 years.
Western Australia has changed its regulations for diagnosing respirable crystalline silica, requiring employers to provide workers with a computed tomography scan instead of the conventional chest X-ray.
New South Wales is trialling a technology to accurately monitor silica dust levels in the air, following the introduction of a tightened exposure standard for silica this year.
Global Road Technology has pioneered a dust suppression chemistry that is effective against coal dust in longwall and continuous miner operations.
While the focus for many has been on the reduction of dust exposure limits across Australia, experts from Australia’s leading professional association for occupational hygienists challenge the mining sector to shift its attention to the effectiveness of dust controls implemented in the workplace.
For many years the focus was on safety at mine sites with prevention of injuries and fatalities. Now there is growing awareness that long term health issues such as lung damage from dust has gone under the radar.
In a sweeping reform to combat and prevent lung health diseases among Queensland’s mine workers, the state government will send a health truck across the regions this year.
A worker with around 41 years of coal mining experience has been diagnosed with coal workers’ pneumoconiosis.
The NSW Mine Safety Advisory Council is hoping to eradicate the threat of dust for mine and quarry workers, as well as workers in other workplace environments, through a new awareness campaign.
Queensland has extended its free lung health checks to all of the state’s mine and quarry workers.
The Queensland Government has awarded a contract to build and operate a mobile health service to Heart of Australia in a bid to bring lung health checks to regional mine workers.
Bat Booth 2.0 uses temperature checks to help protect workers from viral infections and heat stress, while reducing the risk of dust diseases such as coal workers pneumoconiosis, silicosis and farmer’s lung.
Queensland and New South Wales have introduced new initiatives to reduce silicosis cases in the states.
Several New South Wales mines and petroleum sites are ruled out of the new respirable crystalline silica exposure standard due to a class exemption by Safe Work.
Work health and safety ministers have agreed to reduce the workplace exposure standards for respirable crystalline silica as soon as practicable.
RST operations and technical director David Handel explains how mining can tackle the silicosis crisis with effective and cost-efficient dust management solutions.