Worker killed at Queensland mine: Sixth death in 12 months

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A worker at a Queensland coal mine west of Gladstone was killed on Sunday, July 7, the sixth mining and quarry death in less than 12 months.

The incident occurred at Baralaba North coal mine in the Bowen Basin, just after 2am.

According to the ABC, the 27-year-old was declared dead at the scene.

While investigations are continuing, another serious, separate workplace incident occurred on the same morning at the Collinsville open-cut coal mine 90km south-west of Bowen, where it’s reported a man suffered back and pelvic injuries after a fall.

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CFMEU Queensland mining and energy president Steve Smyth told the ABC the mining industry should shut down for at least 24 hours so that “some serious reflection can occur”.

“It’s terrible, we’re sick of it … it’s a safety crisis,” he said.

“We’ve been saying there needs to be a major safety reset.”

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Queensland Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham said he is “extremely distressed and concerned” that there has been six mining and quarry worker deaths in the last 12 months.

“The loss of a life in any workplace at any time is not acceptable,” he said.

“Families should be able to expect that when their loved ones depart for work that they return safe.

“I will be following up on discussions held last week by meeting with representatives of the mining industry, including the Queensland Resources Council, CFMEU and AWU and my Department, as a matter of urgency.”