Much work is needed before there are practically no deaths at mine sites, an industry leader has said.
The Queensland Resources Council (QRC) joined mine workers and their loved ones for a sombre ceremony to remember 1498 colleagues who died in the line of duty at the Moura Miner’s Memorial, 186 km southwest of Gladstone.
QRC Chief Executive Ian Macfarlane joined in commemorating the anniversaries of Capricorn Coal Management’s Moura No.2 Underground Coal Mine disaster (7 August 1994), the Kianga Mine Disaster (20 September 1975) and Moura No.4 Underground Coal Mine (16 July 1986).
“Moura has experienced three tragic mine disasters – Moura No.2 underground, Kianga and Moura No.4 underground – claiming a total of 36 lives,” Macfarlane said in a public statement. “This community understands the hurt and pain suffered from a mine fatality and we will pause and remember those who have fallen and honour all the lives of miners who were taken too soon.”
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Lessons from the past
The event also remembered Queensland’s worst mining disaster, the Mount Mulligan Coal Mine explosion of 1921 that killed 75 workers.
“Mining is part of our history but it will also be an essential part of our future,” Macfarlane said.
No more preventable deaths
Macfarlane expressed his strong desire for there to be no more preventable deaths at mine sites, commending the Queensland Government on initiating a statewide safety reset.
“Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham has released official figures showing 96 percent of workers in Queensland’s resources and quarry sectors had completed safety resets,” he said. “It’s been a difficult year with the death of four mine workers and two quarry workers and we must work together to make mine sites fatality free.”
Service live streamed
The State Department of Natural Resources Mines and Energy live streamed the service on its Facebook page.