The Hunter Coal Festival is underway at full steam in Singleton, and there’s a strong focus on WHS, particularly with last weeks Hunter Mining Show.

Last Thursday Brant Webb, a survivor of the Beaconsfield Mine tragedy spoke about mental health and emergency preparedness.   

Mathew Fellowes, the General Manager of Mines Rescue and Regulation and Compliance said they were delighted to be a part of the two-day program.

“Brant Webb tells a compelling story about the Beaconsfield tragedy and its impact on his life, his family, the community and life after the rescue,” Matthew said.

The Community Day included a great emergency response process demonstration for a serious mine incident which involved Brigadesmen, Mines Rescue, Ambulance and the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service.

The Blackwoods Pavilion was a hive of activity with workshops on the Friday on key WHS topics, including synthetic drugs, first aid, the effects of noise and hygiene factors on workers and an update on regional health statistics and emerging trends.

There was also some innovative products being demonstrated such as:

  • Coal Services’ virtual reality mine safety systems where visitors could test out these world-leading training tools first hand, as well as experience open cut and underground mining environments without leaving the Show.
  • ChekRite’s had a new iPad-based compliance system for inspections and checks of heavy equipment, specifically developed for the mining industry as a low-cost alternative to paper-based checklists for inspecting mobile and fixed assets and
  • Sandvik Fire Suppression’s new Eclipse™ fire fighting foam was impressive as the world’s first environmentally friendly fluorine-free fire suppression foam system, which was demonstrated throughout the show.

The innovation in the Hunter area is world-class, and this week there’s more to see at the festival, such as the Hunter Business Chamber Infrastructure Lunch and the Mine Rehabilitation Conference 2015.