Keeping pace with the development of the mining industry in the State's South-West has initiated an expansion of the services provided by the Department of Minerals and Energy (DOME).
Mines Minister George Cash said following a departmental review of the growing mining industry needs for the region, it was decided to extend the Collie office and make it the hub of inspectorate activities.
Officially opening the new Collie office today, Mr Cash said jurisdiction of DOME's Collie centre now covered nearly 150,000 square kilometres throughout the South-West which bounded the area from Mandurah across to Southern Cross and down to Ravensthorpe.
"Over the years the services and responsibilities of DOME's mining inspectorate have expanded to keep pace with industry needs and changes in legislation," he said.
"Decentralisation of these services to regional areas, like Collie, is an important step to assist in the growth of the State's dynamic minerals and petroleum industry."
Mr Cash said up until March this year, the Collie office had been solely responsible for health and safety in the mines of the Collie coalfield.
He said the office had been extended at a cost of $100,000 to cater for the extra specialised personnel needed to service the region.
The positions include a district mining engineer, an occupational health and safety officer, an electrical inspector, a machinery inspector, an environmental officer and a works inspector.
"This is only the start, and the Collie office will continue to evolve and develop alongside the needs of the mining industry in the South-West," Mr Cash said.
Media contact: Mark Thompson (09) 222 9595