Anglo American, News, Safety

Anglo American embraces remote dozer operations

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Anglo American is training its dozer operators in remote control technology at the Capcoal coal Complex in Queensland.

The operation is trialling a remote-controlled stockpile dozer ahead of plans to retro-fit the entire fleet in a bid to improve operator safety.

Coal handling and processing plant dozer operators at the site were the first to gain experience with the dozers.

“Upskilling our workers in this new technology is paramount to its success because their expertise is irreplaceable, even when the work is done remotely,” Capcoal general manager George Karooz said. “In pursuit of safety and efficiency, the mining industry has been a constant driver of innovation for generations.

“Operating our fleet of dozers from a safe distance will reduce the number of hours in the cab and fully remove our operators from the dozer seat in what is another significant advancement in autonomous mining.”

Acting automation operations manager Matthew Wakeford said operators were being trained in how to control a dozer from a remote control centre.

“We are re-imagining mining to improve people’s lives,” he said. “From a business safety perspective, this will remove our coal miners from the hazards of working with voids in our coal stockpiles.

“We are starting with small steps as our workers adjust from the ‘feeling’ of manual operation to remote control with cameras and computer screens.

“We’re starting with just one dozer, but the plan is to ramp up and retro-fit the entire fleet – that’s 13 in total across our Capcoal and Moranbah operations.”

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