Queensland Coal Inspectorate has issued a safety notice to draw attention to the serious tyre failure incident. A Cat 795F rear dump was being loaded by a rope shovel when a basalt rock approximately 400mm in diameter has fallen on the offside and rolled beneath the truck unnoticed. Once loaded the truck has driven forward over the rock causing Position 6 tyre to immediately fail (figure 1).
This sudden eruption caused numerous pieces of basalt rock shrapnel to eject from the floor, with one rock weighing 950 grams striking a manned Cat D10T dozer parked 40.5 metres away. This rock penetrated the dozer cabin’s right-side window (figure 2) before passing through the cabin and exiting by shattering and pushing out the rear window. The rock was later found on the catwalk behind the cabin. The dozer’s operator stated that he was crouched / leaning forward in the dozer’s seat at the time of the impact. The dozer at the time was waiting to conduct floor clean-up and had Impact Rated XIR Glass fitted. Position 6 tyre which was 512 hours old had been inspected earlier in the day as part of preventative tyre maintenance, and no issues were identified.
The key issues were basalt can have an unconfined compressive strength of 100-300 MPa. High strength strata can cause severe damage to tyres. Mining equipment parked in a potential”line of fire”.
The Inspectorate’s recommendation:
- Identify restricted work areas near excavation faces.
- Designate safe parking areas for equipment near excavated faces.
- Ensure effective risk management for excavation of high strength material (e.g., basalt).
- Ensure loading techniques minimise spillage.
- Review mining equipment to ensure Impact Rated Glass is fitted where required.
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