Progress has been made, but mineral mining industry still has work to do on respirable crystalline silica
The mineral mining and quarrying industry has successfully developed, implemented and shared innovative strategies and knowledge related to the practical application of controls for respirable crystalline silica, but still has some work to do to ensure those controls are appropriately maintained and monitored.
Commissioner for Resources Safety and Health and MSHAC chair Kate du Preez said the forum provided an opportunity for industry professionals to openly collaborate and share learnings for developing, implementing, and maintaining practically effective controls associated with respirable dust.
She said the forum also increased the understanding of potential barriers, and opportunities for localised implementation of controls.
“Continued collaboration and cooperation by mineral mining and quarrying operators, workers and the regulator is vital to ensuring effective controls are implemented to protect people from respirable crystalline silica,” Kate said.
“The industry has come a long way over the last few years when it comes to dust control, particularly in the quarrying industry, and the results we are seeing now are encouraging,” Kate said.
“There is still work to be done, but the data shows that good upfront controls and processes have been put in place and that gives a solid foundation to work from in continuing to drive dust levels lower and to prevent cases of mine dust lung disease.”
The MSHAC respirable crystalline silica forum brought more than 70 industry stakeholders together at to discuss a diverse range of topics including current control measures to reduce dust exceedances, respirable crystalline silica particle size, the lessons learned in the coal mining industry, and the development of practical controls related to dust.
A graphical summary of the discussions and a selection of the presentations are available below.
A selection of presentations from the forum is available below:
- Fritz Djukic, RSHQ - Lessons learned from the coal industry
- Samantha Forster, RSHQ - RCS controls, exceedance investigations
- Aaron Johnstone and Cassandra Koutouridis, CCAA - RCS Management on QLD Quarries
- Nikki LaBranche, UQ - RCS Characterisation and Controls
- David Leahy, Hanson - Wolffdene Quarry Our Journey
- Lionel Smith, RSHQ - Integrated Incident Response Program overview
Last updated: 19 Jul 2022