Black Lung: Should the Hierarchy of Hazard Controls be turned upside down?

The resurgence of black lung in the Australian coal mining industry is a cause for concern. An increasing number of workers have been diagnosed with the disease, despite the belief that pneumoconiosis had been obliterated from our industrial landscape. But how did this happen?

By letting our personal safety standards slip?

The re-emergence of the disease in 2015 and 2016 shows the importance of remaining ever vigilant against the health risks in underground and even open-cut coal mining. There are a number of ways companies can protect their workers. Safety professionals will usually refer to the “Hierarchy of Controls” to guide their priorities when developing far reaching safety policies and practices.

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