Rio Tinto Alcan Weipa’s ‘Hydraulic Valve Opening Tool’ was announced as the winner of this year’s Innovation Awards at the 2014 Queensland Mining Industry Health and Safety Conference dinner held in Townsville last night.
A mechanical tradesman identified an opportunity to change the process in which valves were being opened and closed by developing a hydraulic tool. The safety benefits of the ‘Hydraulic Valve Opening Tool’ include:
- The elimination of risk of musculoskeletal strains of the back and upper body.
- The elimination of potential impact injuries caused by the maintainer being positioned in the line of fire.
- The operator being able to stand in a correct position, addressing posture and slips, trips and falls.
- Reduction in cost.
The other Innovation Award announced at the conference dinner was:
- Highly Commended – Remote Grease Pressure Release System (Downer EDI Mining).
Downer’s unique engineering solution comprises an electrical-operated control unit, mounted on top of a service truck near grease pumps, which can be operated (from as far away as 50 metres) by a simple garage-door styled remote.