AMSJ » Serious eye injury: fractured eye socket
Eye protection Plant Maintenance Pressure

Serious eye injury: fractured eye socket

eye injury eye socket injury
An eye injury occurred after a buildup of pressure

An eye injury to a mine worker performing a routine task on a slurry pump has highlighted the need for effective safety processes and eye protection.

According to a report from the mining regulator, a worker was cleaning a washery sump was hit in the face with mud/slurry from a hose under pressure. The worker suffered a fractured eye socket. It is not certain if adequate eye protection was warn.

Recommendations to industry: Mine operators and contract companies should review the use of non-genuine hoses, nozzles and fittings. Mine operators and contract companies should also review the training their workers have received in relation to the potential hazards associated with blockages in pressurised systems.

Read more….another slurry pump incident

A 10/8 slurry pump exploded after becoming deadheaded during operation. The explosion propelled the associated suction pipe work several metres together with the cover plate causing significant damage to surrounding structures. There was no worker in the vicinity at the time.

How did it happen?

The investigation identified that a modification to the PLC code incorrectly allowed the pump to continue running outside its designated automatic start/stop sequence with the suction and discharge valves closed. This allowed the slurry inside the pump to become superheated and resulted in the pump explosion. The failure occurred on the pump casing bolts, allowing the impeller and pump casing to remain largely intact.
The modification to the PLC took place five years ago and bridged out the interlock that would have prevented the pump from running with the suction and discharge valves closed.
No change management process had been applied when the bridge was installed.
This event was able to occur because the engineering control had been bridged out.
The correct sequence of operation is almost entirely dependent on engineering controls because there is no full time monitoring of the circuit by an operator. However the incorrect operating sequence might be noticed by operators if they have a basic understanding of the filter plant circuit and the associated critical controls.

Recommendations to prevent slurry pump explosions

  • Change management processes should occur whenever a proposed modification to a process may have an impact on the safety and health of workers. The modification should be authorised at an appropriate level of authority, and be documented and understood by operators.
  • Where critical controls are in place to prevent catastrophic events, a regular check should be carried out to verify that the control is effective.
  • Operators should have a basic understanding of the process and of the safety critical controls that are in place.

Read more related content

Add Comment

Click here to post a comment

AMSJ Winter 2021 MREC