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Putting safety at the top of the Christmas list this holiday season

Putting safety at the top of the Christmas list this holiday season

The NSW Resources Regulator is urging the mining industry to keep safety top of mind this holiday season.

NSW Resources Regulator Chief Inspector, Garvin Burns, said that many mining operations continue to operate during the Christmas and New Year holiday period and this time of year can be stressful. It can increase mental health issues, especially for fly-in-flyout (FIFO) mine workers and those working at remote mine sites.

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“Safety in the mining sector needs to be top-of-mind for every employee, every single day. Protecting the health and safety of mining employees, contractors and communities are fundamental during the Christmas and New Year period,” Mr Burns said.

Mr Burns said the Regulator had developed information to help with the increased risk, covering the topics of drugs and alcohol, fatigue, heat and mental health.

“We encourage the industry to share safety messages with its workforce during toolbox talks, safety moments and pre-start meetings this month and into the new year,” Mr Burns said.

The Regulator is also raising awareness about the potential impacts of severe weather on the mining industry.

“Events across eastern states of Australia during 2019 and 2020 highlight the need to plan for severe weather events, specifically fires, floods and heatwaves,” Mr Burns said.

“The effects of severe weather can be wide-ranging. It is critical that emergency risks are identified and adequate controls established, particularly those related to principal hazards at the mine or petroleum site.

“Emergency planning should be based on the risks identified, including first aid, firefighting and rescue arrangements.

The Resources Regulator has provided information on its website to help mines and petroleum sites develop an adequate level of response capability.

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AMSJ April 2022