As Safe Work Month wraps up for another year, today D&B are focusing on the health and safety measures within the mining industry; an industry that has had some of the highest fatalities of any industry, according to Safe Work Australia.
Mining fatalities particularly came under fire last year, when five mining workers across Australia had died by July; nearly double the fatality rates from 2017 and ahead of the fatalities reported at the same time last year. These events prompted the Queensland union to declare a ‘safety crisis’ –as the majority of accidents had occurred throughout Queensland mines. Later that month the Queensland Minister for Natural Resources, Mines and Energy, the Hon Dr Anthony Lynham MP convened with key stakeholders to forge an action plan, to ‘reset’ the safety and health culture in Queensland’s mining industries.
A number of safety reset sessions were then scheduled across Queensland quarry and mine sites throughout July and August 2019 and had more than 52,000 workers attending; which represents more than 95% of Queensland’s mine and quarry workforce. During this time, the Queensland Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy (DNRME) conducted a safety reset survey, released alongside the information sessions, to get a better idea of safety concerns and inform further actions for the industry. Some of the key issues raised within the survey were:
Many respondents expressed the importance strong leadership has on safety culture and the disconnection that can sometimes arise between management and the on-the-ground safety realities faced by the workforce. Suggestions were made to create an open forum for leaders to listen to worker's concerns and to do so without reprisal and senior management having more understanding that the high pressure workers are under, or perceive being under, are increasing the likelihood of mistakes.
Increase of a ‘Casual’ Workforce
Many workers have become concerned about the increasing ‘casualisation’ of the industry. Many believe that employing people on a contract basis can impact the level of detailed training they receive and understanding they gain on each individual mine set up. Other worried that contract workers would feel less comfortable raising concerns and voicing opinions for fear of risking continued employment. Which has highlighted the importance of providing an avenue for workers to move from casual to full-time positions.
Respondents urged the need to focus on quality and frequent training as more inexperienced individuals are entering the industry in higher numbers than before, while many experienced individuals are now leaving the industry and taking their specialised knowledge with them. This means that a lot of new workers are being trained by people who are also reasonably inexperienced. Furthermore, due to the increased demand of projects and workers with a medium to high level of experience mines are also wanting to promote workers, before another mine offers them a better position.
To combat this, respondents have urged for more frequent and higher quality training to be accessible to all workers, at all points of their career- not just when they start at a new site. They also advised that Site Senior Executives (SSE) and mining managers have a level of operational experience in order to assess the practicality and suitability of controls in the Safety and Health Management System (SHMS).
Another issue identified is that the processes and procedures, particularly around emergency or lifesaving Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) could be better defined, simplified and standardised, to ensure all workers knew the ‘correct’ steps to take in an emergency.
To combat this, respondents have suggested that the industry-wide standards like the isolation priority rules and barricading fatal risk controls are reviewed across all mine sites. This is especially important as Safety and Health Management systems vary across sites, making it very important to create and set industry best practice.
DNRME and the key stakeholders within the Queensland mining industry are now working to action the issues raised within the survey and protect QLD workers. Safety has become especially relevant over the last year, with the QLD Resources Industry significantly supporting the sate economy. New data has been released this week which indicates that an extra 50,000 jobs have been created by the resource sector in the past financial year.
The Queensland Resources Council (QRC) which released the information claimed that this data shows one in every five dollars in the state economy and one in six jobs are due to the QLD mining and gas industry; demonstrating the important role the industry will play in the state’s post COVID-19 recovery.
Additionally, the federal government are also allocating $4 billion towards a new JobMaker hiring credit which will support about 450,000 positions for young people from the 2020-21 financial year to the 2022-23 financial year.
However, while the mining industry is under increasing pressure to support both the state and national economy, experts argue that safety moving forward will not be compromised and that it will be a focus for QLD mining sites moving forward, especially with the surge of new workers starting over the next few years.
Location: Regional Queensland
Contract Type: Permanent
Job Description: A world class mining owner/operator are looking for a Geotechnical Superintendent to provide expert Geotechnical Engineering advice to their organization and assist in the establishment of their mining processes.
Underground Geotechnical Engineer
Location: Regional Queensland
Contract Type: Permanent
Job Description: An exciting opportunity to work for a leading Base Metal Producer and learn from a team of professional engineers on a world-class, underground zinc operation.
Mine Planning Engineer
Location: Regional Queensland
Contract Type: Contract
Job Description: An exciting opportunity for a Mine Planning Engineer to work for a renowned Mining Owner/Operator. The successful applicant will be responsible for providing engineering expertise to the business to deliver best fit engineering solutions and making technical contribution to planning, risk management and quality control.
To find out more about any of the roles listed above, or for a more general chat to discuss the upcoming opportunities within mining, engineering or the Health and Safety space, you can contact Jackson and the team here: email@example.com
My client a Multinational Gold Mining Owner/Operator holding several high-grade deposits throughout the eastern goldfields of Western Australia is looking for an Underground Geotechnical Engineer to join their team and provide a high level of operational support to the Underground mines, but also provide assistance to open-pit operations as required by the business. The role is offered on a Residential (Kalgoorlie or surrounding areas) or FIFO from Perth to Kalgorlie on an 8:6 dayshift roster. About the role: Assist in the achievement of budget development, production, meeting all quality standards including cost, safety and environment. Provide a geotechnical service to the mine through understanding, complying, mentoring and liaising with business partners to promote full statutory compliance with mining regulations, legislation and company safety objectives relevant to ground control. Daily production tasks relating to geotechnical engineering including review of development plans, blast plans, documentation of inspections and data collection, geotechnical monitoring, stability analysis, recommendations and QAQC. Develop and maintain an understanding of excavation design, planning, geological and operational issues to identify and communicate potential opportunities and concerns. Capable of running geotechnical aspects of a mine with some input from other senior staff and undertake work for medium-term projects. Requirements: Bachelor's Degree in Mining Engineering, Geological Engineering or Geology with Post Graduate qualifications in Geomechanics. 3-5 years’ experience in Geotechnical Engineering. 3 years’ operational experience in underground mining. Exposure to mining in a seismically active region Knowledge of relevant statutory obligations. Experience using Deswik, Rocsience™ suite, & Numerical modeling packages. Project/Cost Management Training would be highly regarded (desirable) For any questions relating to this role or any other opportunities with D&B and our clients please contact Jackson Burton on 02 9376 8200 or click apply. Your application will be treated as strictly confidential.
Our client is looking for a Contaminated Land Scientist from Junior to Principal Level to join their team and support the APAC team in technical excellence, mentoring, coordinating project delivery, and business development The ideal candidate will have a background in background in contaminated land site assessments and site remediation. the role will involve working collaboratively within the APAC Environmental group, being "hands on" with project delivery, site investigations and remediation, technical report writing and preparation / review of proposals and provide professional advice to our clients. Duties Embrace end to end Project and Program Management responsibilities Coordinate and lead strategic pursuits across industry Outward communication on technical solutions for projects constrained by contamination issues Drive technically robust, practical and commercial solutions Work collaboratively across multi-disciplinary project teams Provide strategic input to business strategies at an APAC level Mentor and develop junior employees to develop their skill sets and empower self-autonomy Skills Tertiary qualifications in a relevant Environmental Discipline industry appropriate certification / accreditation Established technical knowledge coupled with industry project experience in contaminated land and remediation technologies Demonstrated experience on a broad range of projects across multiple sectors and industries Demonstrated commercial acumen and the ability to manage budgets Direct experience in business development and building strong relationships with clients Excellent writing, communication, presentation, strategic thinking, and “people” skills If you feel your experience matches the person specification please contact Jackson Burton on 029376 8200 or click apply. Please note only short listed candidates will be contacted and your application will be treated as strictly confidential.
Our client is currently looking at expanding their team and bringing on a mid to senior level Environmental Consultant to join their Assessment and Approvals team working across major construction and infrastructure projects. The ideal candidate will have expertise in impact assessment and approvals, including post-approval implementation and compliance management. Demonstrated experience across Australian jurisdictions and on international projects is desirable. Duties Supervise environmental assessment and approvals projects, including any post-approval implementation and compliance programs Work collaboratively within multi-disciplinary project teams, providing environmental advice to other business units Develop technically robust, practical and commercial solutions to problems Preparation of various types of environmental assessments across all project delivery phases Prepare proposals and identifying opportunities for client development Mentor and develop junior employees to develop their skill sets and empower self-autonomy Skills Tertiary qualifications in a relevant Environmental Discipline Previous consulting industry experience undertaking a range of projects High level of technical proficiency in environmental planning and approvals Broad knowledge of impact assessment best practices Demonstrated commercial acumen and the ability to manage budgets Excellent writing, communication, presentation, strategic thinking, and “people” skills If you feel your experience matches the person specification please contact Jackson Burton on 029376 8200 or click apply. Please note only short listed candidates will be contacted and your application will be treated as strictly confidential.