Queensland’s safety regulator for the resources industry has warned mine sites to prepare for storm season and put the safety of workers first as the storm season approaches.
Storm season runs from October through to the end of April, and Resources Safety and Health Queensland (RSHQ) is pushing for more precautions to be taken at worksites.
RSHQ‘s Chief Operating Officer Rob Djukic said there has been issues in previous years with fabric building structures like igloos that are not capable of withstanding loads.
“They should never be considered a place of safety during severe weather events,” said Djukic.
Djukic stated that these structures require regular maintenance, and mine sites should make sure that all site facilities are deemed to be places of safety during severe weather events.
Other recommendations made by RSHQ for sites to do during a lightning strike include:
- Operations should cease when lightning is detected within an appropriately determined distance from the worksite.
- Vehicles should be driven to a designated safe lay-down area.
- Operators of vehicles should be transported to a safe shelter away from the equipment.
- Workers should not return to work until an ‘all clear’ has been given.
Lightning strikes have also been known to cause tyre explosions at mine sites.