QMIHSC Legends Award for 2019
Daily Introduction by Master of Ceremonies Russell White, Managing Director, Driver Safety Australia Welcome by Principal Sponsor – Anglo American Tyler Mitchelson, CEO Metallurgical Coal, Anglo American Presentation of the Queensland Mining Industry Health and Safety Conference Legends Award for 2019
Viljoen- An Industry Without Fatalities
Natascha Viljoen Group Head of Processing, Anglo American Natascha is responsible for Group Processing, a specialist technical services and support function that ensures safe, responsible and optimized processing performance, through step-change technologies and operational excellence. With a Metallurgical Engineering degree from North-West University and an Executive MBA from the University of Cape Town (Cum Laude), Natascha also serves on advisory boards at the Universities of Cape Town, Stellenbosch, Pretoria and Queensland University’s Julius Kruttschnitt Mineral Research Centre, having previously held a non-executive position on Anglo American’s Kumba Iron Ore Board. Natascha has previously worked with ISCOR, Anglo Gold, Anglo Platinum, Samancor Chrome, BHP Billiton and Lonmin.
Industry Sharing with Industry
In continuing with the desire from industry to share in key learnings from site-related incidents and following on from the themes of previous conferences, this session will be an open forum from people (within the industry) who will be talking about key issues and challenges faced at times on their site. This session will be a grass roots session without “spin”. A simple presentation outlining what occurred and what changes have been implemented to ensure that things are being done differently. It is for you to consider the relevance to your site and determine if you have a similar exposure, and the controls in place to reasonably preclude a similar event. Facilitator: Damien Wynn, General Manager and Senior Site Executive, AngloAmerican – Grasstree Mine Sharing their Experiences: Grader Fatality Incident and Tree Felling Multiple Injury Incident Paul Stephan, General Manager and SSE, Anglo American Moranbah North Mine North Goonyella Spontaneous Combustion Event Peter Baker, Senior Vice President, Underground Operations, Peabody Australia Drill Rig Incident at Bulgar Open Cut, New South Wales Jeff Kelly, Operations Manager, Glencore
Hanrahan – Nitrogen Foam Table
Clive Hanrahan Operations Manager – Mine Inertisation, Queensland Mines Rescue Service Due to the mining environments in some underground operations, particularly longwalls, where the void space in the goaf becomes wider and longer, the potential for spontaneous combustion and fire events is possible and, in some cases, has happened. The nitrogen foam table is relatively quick to deploy, set up and become operational delivering the gas mixture to the required area. The water in-foam cools the heating whilst the nitrogen gas displaces the oxygen. Using the nitrogen foam table supplies a medium of water foam and nitrogen gas. The water in-foam cools the heating – one leg of the fire triangle whilst the nitrogen gas displaces the oxygen – second leg of the fire triangle. The nitrogen foam table allows for the distribution of the gas/foam mixture to either one borehole or by opening secondary valving, an additional borehole can be treated at the same time. Where a spontaneous combustion/fire event has been identified mid pillar, the utilisation of the table to treat two boreholes at the same time will greatly assist in the reduction or elimination of that event. When drilling boreholes from the surface into underground voids the nitrogen foam table allows the gas/foam mixture to be utilised to create an inert shield whereby the foam acts as a wetting agent to prevent any incendive sparking during the drilling process & the gas displaces any potential oxygen present. In mining areas: Such as the maingates of longwalls where there is oxygen contained within the airwash zone the gas foam mixture could be utilised to create a “plug” behind the maingate face end shields which would reduce / eliminate any airwash issues. The table can be readily located adjacent to a seal site either prior to or after the seal installation. The gas/foam mixture can be distributed from the nitrogen foam table via piping through the erected seal or hosing through the proposed seal site.
Lansdowne – Blind Intersection Warning LED Indication
Rod Lansdowne Outbye Electrical Coordinator
The ProblemA recent incident report identified a “Near Miss” at an underpass intersection between the 2nd main travel routes of the mine, involving a loader and a man transporter. Safety meetings with crews identified that with the LED strip lighting underground, it made it difficult to identify vehicles entering the main headings from blind corners, and suggestions were made to remove strip lighting from around the underpass intersections to allow identification of vehicles at the intersection (via headlights on the vehicles).
The SolutionAfter further consultation, it was decided not to remove the current lighting from the intersection but to find a solution that would work within all the current controls under the Mine Transport Rules. Work was already being trialled on using coloured LED indication for belt monitoring purposes, and testing began on using the same string of LED to use an amber light to give an indication of movement from around the blind corner. An ultrasonic system was chosen, as a way of removing human behaviour, and testing to confirm functionality, so that either vehicle or pedestrian would activate the warning lights. A trial was put in place at 30ct underpass to test overall functionality and allow feedback from the workforce as to what changes were required prior to implementing through out the mine.
Benefits/EffectsBy adding an autonomous warning system, it gives a visual warning to vehicles/pedestrians in the travel roads of movement around the blind corner. Being autonomous, there is no reliance on people’s behaviours or attitude.
TransferabilityAlready looking at using the same system to change existing block lights on site to ultrasonic, replacing existing drift lighting with the same LED strips, use of LED strips to indicate gas levels at TG machine doors.
InnovationCombined current technologies to achieve working system. Approximate Cost – $2600 for single control box and lighting
Ramsay – Diamond Wire Saw Mobile Unit
Matt Ramsay Drilling Superintendent – Gas, Anglo American – Moranbah North Mine
The ProblemThe rehabilitation of redundant Mine Service boreholes requires the shearing and removal of cemented 20” Steel casing at 1.5m below the ground surface. This process previously required the entry into the excavation and the risk associated with the manual handling of a hydraulic saw device to cut the casing at required position. During this cutting process the operators experienced several rotating blade failures that resulted in small shard of steel ejected from the saw blade and contacted the operator’s glove.
The SolutionThe strategy to eliminate the hazards identified from investigation of the event; it was actioned to source an alternative device with the capacity to efficiently shear 20” cement encased steel casing, eliminating manual handling, exposure to excavation; via the functionality of remote operation. The Diamond Wire Saw (DWS) device was identified, assessed and then progressed to primary design functional testing phase in December 2018. With positive observations of improved safety, efficiency and operational performance parameters. During the trial and testing period, this involved collaboration and engagement of DWS OEM and test operators. The collaboration of stakeholders delivered engineering inputs combined with the collation of test operator feedback facilitated continuous improvement of the DWS device’s re-purposed application into an integrated mobile unit.
The BenefitsThe field functional testing and operation of the DWS mobile unit demonstrated:
- Elimination – of traditional rotating blade failure hazard – Guarded Diamond impregnated cable
- Elimination – of manual handling – proximity protected – remotely controlled loader positions and retrieves DWS
- Elimination – CMW entry into excavation – DWS utilizes self-attachment / release function
- Elimination – of manual handling – proximity protected – remotely controlled loader secures the casing during cutting process and relocates to waste transport
- Separation – remote operator console – remove CMW exposure to line of fire
- Separation – remote operator console – remove CMW exposure to excavation
- Operational effectiveness performance realized an increase of 60% on previous methodology
Zanette/Batterson – Broadmeadow Battery Electric Vehicle for UG Coal
Dave Zanette Project Supervisor, BMA Andrew Batterson BMA Engineering The Broadmeadow Battery Electric Vehicle project was initiated to address the residual Similar Exposure Groups (SEG) exposure to Diesel Particulate Matter (DPM). Over the last 3 years, Broadmeadow (BRM) has successfully completed a number of projects to reduce occupational exposures to DPM for the underground SEGs. These initiatives have resulted in ongoing improvement to the mine’s total exposure profile, which we understand is now approximately one third of most other underground coal mines in Queensland. After exhausting all options for a suitable lower emissions diesel engine package options for underground personnel transporters BMA initiated an aggressive schedule for implementation of an underground battery electric personnel transporter. With the local market opportunities exhausted, the BRM team sourced international suppliers with previous experience in manufacturing electric personnel transporters. A supplier was selected and a commitment to implement a surface trial was to commence in FY19. Broadmeadow set up and implement a team to carry out the FAT testing and trial of the vehicle, the trial included but not limited to determining all required safety, legislative, performance and failure modes required by stakeholders for the trial to be successful. In the back ground the engineering team and supplier conducted the necessary detailed assessments and engineering modifications against current Australian Standards and legislation for the suitability of implementing an underground trial. BRM has successfully completed surface and underground trials proving the safety, reliability and performance of a battery electric vehicle whilst also validating the extremely low operating cost. The next phase of the project is to implement full production trials by removing all diesel powered personnel transporters from a development section of the mine to validate the DPM exposure reductions.
Goonawardene/Elliot – Proactive Floor Fracturing Using UIS Drilling
Rav Goonawardene Geology and Geotechnical Superintendent, Anglo American – Grosvenor Mine Ben Elliot Trainee ERZ Controller, Anglo American – Grosvenor Mine A series of floor heave and gas inrush events have occurred during the development mining process in MG103 and MG104 at Grosvenor Underground Coal Mine. These events have exposed coal mine workers to elevated levels of methane preventing safe mining operations. The presence of an undrained source of gas in the immediate floor, geotechnical floor characteristics, loading environment and various other factors have contributed to the dynamic floor failure. Methane released during these events are originating from the underlaying thin Goonyella Middle Lower (GML) seam which is a thin carbonaceous layer with high ash content. The 1m – 5m interburden thickness between the GM seam and the GML has an increased likelihood of the floor gas release events. Based on the analysis of these gas events, creating a conduit in the interburden between the GM seam and GML will allow the gas to freely release to the development roadway during development drivage. This will prevent the build up of gas within the interburden creating a floor gas release event. The proactive interburden fracturing was initiated using water pressure generated from a longwall salvage pump. The current UIS drilling equipment was retrofitted with a series of subs, packers and a fracturing tool to initiate a hydro fracture within the drilled UIS borehole. Once the packers are fully inflated and in position, a diversion valve is then activated to allow the fracturing tool to inject high water pressure to the desired location. Thus, given the complexity of predicting verticality of the hydro fracture in the interburden, a UIS borehole was drilled in the lower section of the GM seam as proving hole to check the effectiveness of hydro fracture. The main benefit of the proactive interburden fracturing process is having the ability to reduce the likelihood of exposing development coal mine workers at the face to high methane levels.
Howell/Pendrigh – Water Treatment Plant Inlet Screen Blower
David Howell Tailings and Water Coordinator, Rio Tinto Weipa Operations Luke Pendrigh Tailings and Water Electrician, Rio Tinto Weipa Operations During normal operation at the Water Treatment Plant the inlet screen in the Bio Reactor blocks with debris, sludge and fecal matter. The cleaning of the inlet screen was a laborious task that exposed maintainers to raw sewage and repeated manual handling risks. The crew came up with an engineering control that completely prevented the inlet screen from blocking, eliminating the need to remove and clean the screen. With this new system functioning the crew have removed a great deal of frustration and reduced the handling of this inlet screen to planned maintenance intervals and significantly reducing the crew’s exposure to the biological risk.
Goonawardene/Crosby – Use of Laser Scanners in an Underground Coal Mine for Strata Monitoring, Drift Convergence & Incident Investigations
Ravindu Goonawardene Geology and Geotechnical Superintendent, Anglo American – Grosvenor Mine Chris Crosby Surveying Superintendent, Anglo American – Grosvenor Mine The risk of fatalities due to roof and rib failures is still prevalent in underground coal mines which highlights the fundamental importance of monitoring roof and ribs in underground roadways. Monitoring strata deformation and convergence in underground roadways is a key metric for measuring instability of excavations. Visual inspections, telltales, extensometers and instrumented bolts are some of the methods used to quantify strata deformation. The significant limitations of the current methods only provide a point-measurement along the roadway. Using laser technology allows the mine to scan and measure large regions of roof and ribs across continuous regions with millimetre accuracy. The Maptek SR3 laser scanner has been used as a control during the rib optimisation trial at Grosvenor. This technology provides a baseline scan and subsequent scans to ascertain the extent of deformation throughout the active development mining areas. Thus, allowing geotechnical engineers to assess the adequacy of the trialled support system. Moreover, this technology allows geotechnical engineers to better analyse geological anomalies (fault orientations, dips, throw), bolting tolerances and excavation dimensions in an effective manner.