THE NSW Department of Mines and Energy (DME) has issued a safety alert urging mines to fit equipment with emergency steering systems after a worker sustained severe injuries in a dump truck accident.
The driver lost control of a loaded dump truck when attempting to change gears while the exhaust brake was engaged.
According to the DME, the engine stalled and the driver could not use the gears to slow the vehicle which caused it to fall down an embankment and roll on its side.
The truck was not fitted with any form of emergency steering or preventative exhaust braking system.
The DME is urging mines to provide emergency steering systems to immobilise equipment in the event of engine or power failure.
Preference should be given to systems which provide ample driver warning when main systems fail.
Mines are also being urged to periodically test braking systems to ensure dry brake surfaces are not contaminated.
According to the DME, systems should be capable of stopping the maximum load at the maximum speed.
Management should also review defect management systems and provide safety barriers on haul roads where there is a significant risk of vehicle roll over.