Resources Safety & Health Queensland has reported an incident involving a worker been struck by a gauge and some fluid during maintenance.
A coal mine worker was removing a defective pressure gauge from a longwall shield leg. When the worker removed the retaining staple, residual pressure in the hydraulic system ejected the gauge from the fitting with some force. The gauge and some fluid struck the worker on the arm. Medical examination identified the possibility fluid injection into the worker’s arm had occurred. Surgery was required on the worker’s arm to ensure that fluid injection had not occurred.
In response to the incident Resources Safety & Health Queensland recommends:
Site Senior Executives
• Ensure that the risk management processes in use at the mine, identify the potential for residual risk and that effective controls are in place to manage this residual risk.
• Supervisors must ensure that energy isolation has been effectively implemented and tested by coal mine workers before permitting work to commence on plant or equipment.
Coal mine workers
• Coal mine workers must ensure that all energy sources are isolated effectively, and tested to ensure pressure is relieved before commencing work on plant or equipment.
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