2017 Level 1 Mine Emergency Exercise - Broadmeadow Mine

19 Mar 2018

The Queensland Mining Warden’s inquiry into the explosion at the Moura No. 2 mine in August 1994 recommended, “Emergency procedures should be exercised at each mine on a systematic basis, the minimum requirement being on an annual basis for each mine.” (Windridge et al.1996).In December 1996, the Approved Standard for the Conduct of Emergency Procedures Exercises was published. This approved standard was updated and issued as Recognised Standard 8 Conduct of Mine Emergency Exercises (RS8) in June 2009. It provides guidelines for conducting mine site emergency exercises, including the requirement to test state-wide emergency responses by holding an annual exercise.It is 23 years since the Moura No 2 disaster, and since 1998, there have been 20 Level 1 Mine Emergency ... Read more >>

Simtars RTO celebrates 20 years!

19 Mar 2018

This year marks the 20th anniversary of Simtars’ Registered Training Organisation (RTO 1828), which provides safety training services to the Queensland mining resource sector. The dedicated RTO team continues to offer specialist and highly advanced technical training that promotes safety, health and improved working practices.Simtars has played a leading role in the development and delivery of accredited and non-accredited training aimed at improving practices and safety in underground coal mines. We have also remained at the forefront of promoting better health and safety standards globally, delivering advanced risk management and regulatory best practice workshops to international clients in India and south-east Asia.Our clients benefit from courses that are developed and delivered by Simtars and industry-leading experts. This expertise, and our ... Read more >>

Simtars New Mining Safety & Research Strategy

13 Mar 2018

Simtars has launched its new five year research strategy to help improve safety and health outcomes for Queensland’s mining industry. Dr Gareth Kennedy, Director of Simtars’ Mine Safety Technology Research Centre said the research strategy focuses on four key areas including health, safety, emergency response and emergency preparedness.“We’ve consulted with industry and other stakeholders to develop a strategy that will see more research focused around respirable dust, human-machine interactions, emergency preparedness, spontaneous combustion and explosion survivability.“The new research strategy provides a consolidated and focused approach that better aligns to the current and future needs of industry.Simtars is currently undertaking research and testing of proximity detection systems, spontaneous combustion characteristics, chemical exposure risks, mine fire inertisation, tyre inflation safety and a ... Read more >>

Simtars Environment Team helps a mining company

28 Feb 2018

Navigating the complexity of an environmental authority (EA) and meeting compliance requirements place ever increasing pressure on mines to comply with more stringent environmental regulations. Recently a mine relied on Simtars’ expertise in a range of technical disciplines to undertake a multi-faceted assessment to determine potential environmental and community impacts around their long-standing resource operation in South-East Queensland. The primary concerns arose from potential discharge of sediments into local waterways, potential discharge of respirable silica dust to air, and environmental noise.Simtars approach included:characterisation of the existing receiving environment (using both impact and reference sites), including:assessment of the likelihood of the presence of any flora or fauna species of conservation significancecharacterisation of the water quality within the local areacharacterisation of the ... Read more >>

Simtars visit to India

15 Dec 2017

Simtars colleagues continued their business trip in India - helping the Indian mining safety and health regulator implement their new legislation, which is modelled on the Queensland legislation.There was a pressing need for this new legislation to be explained to the resources sector in India to ensure its successful implementation.Dr Tilman Rasche, Senior Inspector, Resources Safety and Health, delivered 4 workshops during November to highlight how the legislation and successful risk management will lead to reduced injuries and fatalities.The workshops, structured to ensure relevance for mine managers, operations managers, general managers, CEOs and inspectors, were delivered in Delhi, Kolkata, Hyderabad and Nagpur. Approximately 140 personnel from government, private and public companies attended. The workshops were made possible through funding provided ... Read more >>

3D laser scanning now at Simtars

08 Nov 2017

Simtars is developing new applications and services using the recently purchased 3D Point Cloud Laser Scanner. Potential applications of the scanner include:industrial accident and investigation supportresearchtraining scenario creationgeneral 3D visualisation.Unlike conventional photography, a laser scanner allows you to capture images in 3D space. At a detection rate of 1 million samples per second, the laser measures points in time and space to determine x y z coordinates. An object is displayed as a collection of dots or points, spaced millimetres apart, inside the virtual space. The scanner has a detection range of up to 270m distance with an accuracy of 3mm at 50m. The built-in camera overlays photographic imagery to provide colour texture to each point, or this image can ... Read more >>

Simtars Occupational Hygiene Services

03 Nov 2017

With Simtars’ ongoing global networking continuing to grow, so does our ability to serve local mining clients. For several years, Simtars has been collaborating with Lihir Island Mine in Papua New Guinea to help them gain a better understanding of the risk exposure of workers during operations. From an initial Health Risk Assessment undertaken in 2012, Simtars performed a baseline monitoring program and subsequent statistical analysis, identifying 37 similar exposure groups and analysing 140 sets of data collected from nine surveys over the past 12 months. The lessons learnt are invaluable to staff as we grow our understanding and capability in these global markets and apply this knowledge to the Queensland industry. Read more >>

Queensland Mining Industry Health and Safety Conference: Mining Legends Award

12 Sep 2017

In June this year, Simtars was approached by the Organising Committee of the Queensland Mining Industry Health and Safety Conference to help design and construct a trophy befitting a mining legend. This perpetual award was commissioned to recognise outstanding contributions by individuals in the field of mine safety and health. It also recognises their commitment to their fellow workers, by sharing their extensive knowledge about mine operations and safe work practices. These dedicated individuals have helped bring about change in legislation governing mine safety to ensure every mine worker goes home safe, every day.This year, the inaugural award was given to 2 deserving recipients: Ron McKenna and John Brady.John and Ron have both tirelessly served the mining industry acting as ... Read more >>

Spontaneous combustion in underground coal operations

04 Sep 2017

Spontaneous combustion is a major hazard in underground coal mining operations. If not detected early and managed properly, it can lead to death, injury, and productivity loss.Simtars is offering a face-to-face course in Dysart for 3 days at the end of September for supervisors, technical managers, and deputies and ERZ controllers who are charged with applying the spontaneous combustion management plan, and are currently working in underground coal operations.Participants will learn through theory and practical simulations covering topics including mining factors and mine design, physical and gas indicators, sampling and monitoring, and treating spontaneous combustion.Our trainers – Martin Watkinson, Lauren Forrester and Sean Muller – have over 55 years of underground experience combined, bringing a wealth of practical knowledge to ... Read more >>

2017 EK Healy

18 Aug 2017

This year’s EK Healy Competition was held at the Queensland Mines Rescue Service (QMRS) Dysart Rescue Station. A number of scenarios were presented to the rescue teams, ranging from firefighting to underground simulations in a series of connected shipping containers.The Simtars mobile laboratory was on site and was used to monitor the gas products from the mine inertisation unit (MIU). The MIU is based on a Polish jet fighter engine which produces 20-25 m3/s of inert gases and water vapour. It was formerly known as the GAG. Simtars gas chemists, Lauren Forrester and William Valo, achieved this by using the onboard tube bundle system and gas chromatograph.The reports were fed back to QMRS to enable the fine-tuning of the running ... Read more >>

Mine safety journal shines a light on Simtars’ emergency response services

07 Aug 2017

Simtars is delighted to feature in the winter 2017 edition of the Australasian Mine Safety Journal (AMSJ). The publication has a full length feature on our services, with a particular focus on our emergency response capabilities, preventative services and developments.Emergency responseOur emergency response capability can deploy quickly, with personnel and the mobile gas laboratory on call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The Simtars emergency response team supports Queensland Mines Inspectorate investigations—we formed part of the emergency response to the Moura No. 4 mine disaster in 1986 and Moura No. 2 mine explosion in 1994. We were also the first to offer international assistance for New Zealand’s Pike River mine disaster in 2010, with 20 of our staff ... Read more >>

Simtars: sharing our stories at QMIHSC

21 Jul 2017

The theme for this year’s Queensland Mining Industry Health and Safety Conference is ‘Sharing my story’ and Simtars staff have some great stories to share. Three of our staff are presenting at the conference in addition to 7 other Department of Natural Resources and Mines staff.The Simtars team will share a range of stories – observations from a lifetime in coal, what the data tells us about keeping contract workers safe, and in the 13th anniversary year after the Moura No.2 disaster – the ongoing work of Task-Group-4 in emergency response.Make sure you plan your conference well, visit the QMIHSC website for more information and the program.Simtars is delighted to have 3 of our team presenting at this years' Queensland ... Read more >>

Successful trials of Mine Escape Vehicle at Centennial Newstan Mine

25 May 2017

The Simtars Research Team, working with staff from CSIRO, carried out successful underground trials of the Mine Escape Vehicle (MEV) at New South Wales, Centennial Newstan mine during March.The MEV project was established in 2002 in response to the Moura No 2 mine disaster in 1994. It is one of the few remaining recommendation made from the inquiry that has not been implemented.The 2001 Level One exercise at Kestrel Mine demonstrated the need for the MEV when the Queensland Mine Rescue Service (QMRS) and the incident management team were unable to respond to survivors deep underground.The project stages included:R&D into diesel engine options to enable safe vehicle operation in high methane environmentsadaption to retrofit existing mine vehicles for rescuedevelopment of ... Read more >>

Simtars wins the ‘We Deliver’ DNRM 2017 Achievement Award

12 Apr 2017

David Phipps and Diane Lostroh worked tirelessly with the Safety Training Centre team and Senior Mines Inspector Tilman Rasche to deliver two weeks of high quality training in India. This prestigious annual award was one of only five received across the department.Mine Safety and Health training was delivered to 25 mine managers from Coal India—the largest coal mining company in the world.The team worked closely with staff across Simtars and Mine Safety and Health to tender, develop and deliver an intensive suite of specialised technical and regulatory training modules for the mine managers, who in turn are able to deliver the training to other Coal India staff.The project was a two-year logistical feat which involved coordinating technical education content, training ... Read more >>

Students and teachers from Moura State High School meet the Simtars Team

11 May 2017

The first site visit for 2017 wrapped up a moment ago here at Simtars. Students and teachers from Moura State High School spent the morning meeting members of the Simtars Executive Team and technical staff. Given the two Moura mine disasters in the 80s and 90s, there is an intrinsic link between Simtars and Moura. Simtars was established to prevent disasters such as those that devastated the Moura community. Following visits to (and demonstrations of!) the Virtual Reality Immersive Training Theatre and the ever-popular Propagation Tube, the students now have a better understanding of what Simtars does to ensure every mine worker in Queensland goes home safe, every day. ... Read more >>