Both federal and state governments have allowed mining operations to stay active, referring to them as “essential” businesses.
According to Queensland Resources Council chief executive Ian Macfarlane, the industry is committed to putting people first, abiding by advice given from the country’s health authorities.
“We have worked with the industry across the country to develop national protocols to protect our staff, our families, our suppliers, our communities, our state, and our nation,” he said.
“With the Queensland border now closed, resources workers travelling from interstate will also wear high-viz. Companies will be encouraged to give their staff a letter detailing their work commitments, where they would be staying and how long.
“For an industry that supported one in every seven jobs in Queensland before the coronavirus, we know the responsibility of keeping those 372,000 workers safe and protecting the safety of all Queenslanders.”
Macfarlane hosted a conference call with 100 industry representatives and Queensland mayors yesterday to elevate the industry’s health precautions.
This includes temperature measurements at mine site entires and health questionnaires for visitors and suppliers.
South Australia’s Department for Energy and Mining has recommended resources companies to provide detailed transmission prevention control measures to SA Health.
Exploration activities are not accepted for cross-border transit to work sites other than in “exceptional circumstances”, according to Department for Energy and Mining chief executive Paul Heithersay.
This is comparable to New South Wales Resources Regulator’s response plan, with the state’s workplace health and safety laws enforcing that employers must have measures to eliminate and manage coronavirus risks.
Meanwhile, a departmental plan was still in the works for Western Australia’s Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety (DMIRS).
The plan will aim “to ensure a continuity of service”, according to a DMIRS public statement.