Worker sustains burns, fractures after conveyor accident

A worker has been seriously injured after he was caught in a moving conveyor.

He sustained a de-gloving injury, friction burns, and multiple fractures to his hands, arms, and back.

According to a Department of Mines and Petroleum (DMP) report, the boilermaker was working alone, and in the process of shutting down a crushing plant when he noticed a rock rotating in the nip point of the conveyor’s tail end pulley.

The conveyor, positioned at head height, was part of the crushing circuit and adjacent to a screen deck. Material from the screen deck had accumulated on the ground beside the conveyor next to the nip point.

As he stood on the material, he reached behind the belts with both hands, using a spanner to try and dislodge the rock, but as the conveyor had not been isolated, his hands were pulled into the conveyor’s nip point.

The man was eventually able to remove his arms when the tail-end pulley came to a stop and find emergency assistance.

The Department is conducting an ongoing investigation into the incident.

They have also recommended actions to reduce injury while working with or around conveyers, including providing appropriate guarding to dangerous parts of a conveyor, enforcing isolation procedures for plant and machinery, and installing sufficient emergency stop devices on conveyors.

Between January 2011 and September 2016 there were 107 reported injuries involving conveyors at mine sites.