A mine emergency has continued this afternoon at the Bootu Creek NT mine following the collapse of a wall and the ‘burying of the mineworker’
A police spokesperson said a “substantial wall failure” occurred at the Bootu Creek Mine site at about 2.40pm Saturday, trapping a worker. The manganese mine is located about 110 kilometres north of Tennant Creek and owned by mine is owned by Singapore-based OM Holdings..
“An employee is believed to have been engulfed under a significant volume of soil and rock,” the spokesperson said.
“Extensive efforts are currently underway to locate the employee.”
According to ABC News, the mineworker is a 59-year-old man from Darwin.
A former mine worker told AMSJ that the site had a range of safety concerns and that “it wasn’t a surprise” the accident occurred. A number of unsafe conditions had been previously reported to management and Government inspectors the worker said.
Northern Territory Police, Fire and Emergency Services responded and are currently still on site.
They said “At about 2:40 pm (Saturday) there was a substantial wall failure on the Western Limb located at the Bootu Creek Mine site. An employee is believed to have been engulfed under a significant volume of soil and rock.”
NT WorkSafe Mine Inspection Team have been notified.
Investigations into the circumstances surrounding this incident have also commenced.
*Updated 10.55pm 25/8 – AMSJ has been informed that the mineworker was not in a machine at the time of the incident. We have been unable to confirm the circumstances of the incident but understand that the mineworker was a respected member of the site team.
Superintendent Chris Board from NT Police confirmed
“The instability of the site remains very real, which has delayed any excavation at this time. Sadly, due to the nature of the collapse, the information thus far indicates the likelihood of survival is low.”
Image OM Holdings (Supplied)