The NSW Resources Regulator has released a report regarding to a worker suffered permanent injuries to his foot after it became entangled in a scrape conveyor at Appin North Mine.
On 8 June 2019 a labour-hire worker was tasked with assisting with the installation of a new scraper conveyor at the underground coal mine known as the Appin North Mine (the mine) which is located approximately 30 kilometres northwest of Wollongong in NSW.
The worker was washing coal fines and muck into a sump located at the lower end of the scraper conveyor while the conveyor was operating. The worker was located on a steel enclosure on top of the scraper conveyor. The steel enclosure was covered with a finer mesh (tech mesh), which was installed as an interim measure to prevent fingers entering the scraper conveyor.
The worker continued to hose down the coal fines while standing on the conveyor and walking on the steel enclosure. Unbeknown to the worker, when he got to the end of the tech mesh there was a gap in the steel enclosure under the mesh. The worker’s foot bent the tech mesh down and his foot and a small section of the mesh became entangled in the scraper conveyor. The worker pulled his foot out of the scraper conveyor, and while doing so, suffered serious and permanent injuries to his toes and foot.
This was only the second time the worker had been in the Appin North scraper conveyor drift.
The report describes the investigation conducted by the Resources Regulator into the cause and circumstances of the incident and provides the investigation findings and recommendations to industry.