Gordon Hill

Gordon Hill

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    Number of accidental deaths in mining industry halved

    9/10/1992 12:00 AM
     
     
    The number of accidental deaths in the mining industry halved in 1991-92, compared with the year before.
     
    Mines Minister Gordon Hill today said five miners had died, compared with 10 in 1990-91.
     
    There had also been decreases in both the incidence and frequency of non-fatal accidents.
     
    The Minister was releasing a report, prepared by the Department of Minerals and Energy, on fatal and other injuries in the industry.
     
    He said that although the improvements in safety were significant and welcome, even one death was too many.
     
    "In the past 30 years, there has been a marked decrease in the incidence of all injuries in mines, whether fatal, serious or minor," he said.
     
    "The figures indicate this trend is continuing and that worker safety programs are increasingly effective - through the co-operation of the industry and workforce."
     
    Mr Hill said the injury index, which measures days lost through injury per million hours worked, had fallen from 319 in 1990-91 to 291 in 1991-92, an improvement of nine per cent.
     
    The number of more serious injuries - where more than four weeks were lost from work - per thousand employees, had decreased by 30 per cent since 1987-88.
     
    The incidence of less serious injuries (11 to 20 days lost) per thousand employees dropped by 44 per cent in the same period.
     
    Mr Hill said that although the figures were a marked improvement, there was no room for complacency.
     
    "There is no such thing as an acceptable fatalities figure," he said.
     
    "All accidents can be prevented and more work must be done to improve induction and training programs and eliminate poor work practices.
     
    "I congratulate all those involved in the industry on the results, and urge them to work for even better ones next year."
     
    Copies of the report are available from the Mining Engineering Division library, 6th Fl, Mineral House, 100 Plain Street, E Perth, or by phoning 222 3532.