Anglo American has halted operations at the Grosvenor coal mine in central Queensland after an accident that injured five people.
The mine has been evacuated as Anglo American works with the authorities to ensure it is safe to return underground and commence an investigation into the explosion.
Anglo American transported the five workers to Moranbah Hospital for immediate medical assistance before they were transferred to Brisbane for further treatment.
“Our focus right now is on supporting our injured colleagues and their families, and our team is doing everything they can to provide support,” Anglo American chief executive of metallurgical coal business, Tyler Mitchelson said.
“We are all devastated and we don’t yet understand what caused this incident. Once it is safe to return underground, we will commence an expert technical investigation to ensure we understand what has happened.
“We will then work with our regulators and other stakeholders to ensure this type of incident never happens again.”
Australia’s Minister for Resources, Water and Northern Australia Keith Pitt said his thoughts were with the injured workers and their families.
“This is a distressing time for the Queensland mining community, particularly the workmates of the injured workers at the mine site,” he said.
“I have spoken with Queensland Minister Anthony Lynham who informed me an official investigation is now under way to determine the cause of the accident.”
The Grosvenor mine is a longwall metallurgical coal operation that was established in 2016.