AMSJ » Contractor fined $60,000 for arc flash incident
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Contractor fined $60,000 for arc flash incident

Crushing Services International has been fined $60,000 following an arc flash incident at Atlas Iron’s Wodgina iron ore project in the Pilbara.

On November 9, 2013, CSI electrician Daniel Blaess was replacing components within a switch room at the mine when an arc flash occurred.

The company pleaded guilty to exposing an employee to a hazard and was sentenced in South Hedland Magistrates Court yesterday.

Department of Mines and Petroleum Mines Safety Director and State Mining Engineer Andrew Chaplyn said CSI had failed to ensure that electrical equipment under their control at the mine was adequately maintained.

“The electrical equipment cubicle had no barrier preventing contact with live terminals and Mr Blaess was exposed to live electrical conductors,” Mr Chaplyn said.

“It is extremely important to ensure that there is sufficient and effective supervision for the installation, maintenance and testing of electrical equipment at mine sites.

“Proper electrical supervision is critical in reducing electrical risks.”

Mr Chaplyn said Mr Blaess suffered serious burns from the incident and could have been killed.

“This incident had the potential to kill and is a stark reminder of the importance of electrical safety across mining operations,” he said.

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AMSJ April 2022