Pay link could cut mine deaths
Mining companies should consider tracking the number of serious injuries and near-miss accidents to management performance indicators to help reduce the number of deaths in the industry.
The recommendation is contained in a new analysis of serious mining injuries conducted by the Department of Mines and Petroleum this year.
The report, which analyses serious injuries in the mining industry from reports submitted in late 2013, finds that attacking the causes of serious injuries is more likely to lead to a reduction in mining fatalities than measures of overall safety performance often used by companies.
Most companies use frequency rates for lost-time injuries or restricted work injuries in key performance indicators. They are used to help calculate bonuses for staff and management.
But the DMP report mirrors the long-held concerns of many safety experts, suggesting those measurements provide a guide to overall safety standards but do not necessarily help companies reduce the number of industry fatalities.
Despite a fatality-free year in 2012, the number of worksite deaths has remained relatively unchanged for more than a decade, averaging two to three deaths a year, according to Mines Minister Bill Marmion.