Mine safety improves as major injuries drop
QUEENSLAND lifted its mine safety performance in 2009-10, recording falls in most injury classes.
A report by the Mines Inspectorate shows medical treatment injuries almost halved, falling from 924 the previous year to 546, while disabling injuries – requiring staff to be placed on alternate duties – dropped to 413 from 417.
Lost-time injuries also recorded a fall to 285 from 301, and days lost to lost-time injuries were cut by over 7000 – from 17,387 to 10,335.
Days lost to disabling injuries fell from 12,346 to 9306, average days lost per injury fell from 41.4 to 28.1, and injury severity rate was cut from 337 to 239 days lost per million hours worked.
Figures to rise were the lost-time injury frequency rate, up from 3.4 to 3.5 injuries per million hours worked, and the number of permanent incapacities, which rose from 39 to 47.
The report, however, was not all good news.
It noted one death, which led to a statewide audit of brakes on vehicles and uncovered ‘‘many examples of very poor practice’’.
The report said analysis of losttime injuries indicated workers aged 50 or more took longer on average to recover.
Injuries common to all age-groups included sprains, strains, fractures and contusions along with falls, trips and muscular stress due to lifting, carrying and from working with earthmoving equipment.
‘‘ Being hit by a moving or falling object is more prevalent among younger workers,’’ the report said.