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Wran Mine Safety Review

In September 2004, the then-Minister for Mineral Resources, Kerry Hickey MP, announced a new mine safety review convened by the Hon. Neville Wran AC QC and assisted by Ms Jan McClelland and a panel of three experts.

The review was the next step in the plan to see NSW achieve zero mine fatalities and serious injuries.

The Wran Mine Safety Review 2004 was finalised in March 2005 and submitted to the Minister for Mineral Resources.

The Government has carefully assessed each of the Wran recommendations, and has given approval to their implementation. The NSW Government has developed a practical, workable plan that will deliver more resources to mine safety regulation and will require more involvement by industry to see that the Wran recommendations come to life.

The NSW Government accepted the recommendation of the 2005 Wran Mine Safety Review that a new, strengthened Mine Safety Advisory Council should take forward future examination and progression of mine safety and health issues.

The Council is progressing recommendations 1 (Independent assessment production bonus/ safety incentives), 19 (System to monitor hours i.e. swipe card), 20 (Commissioning of an expert to assess hours of work and fatigue) 26 (Examination of "disconnect" between plans and actions) and 30 (Commissioning an independent to conduct independent assessment of consultation) and has recently put out a request for tender for commissioned research into these recommendations. The Council is also progressing the roll-out of the new OHS legislative framework (recommendations 2 and 3).

Finally, as per recommendations 23 and 24 of the Wran Review the Government has undertaken the Board of Inquiry to "examine the issue of enforcement policy and the processes used to implement the policy".

Coal Mine Safety Audit Report

The Coal Mine Safety Audit Report is the result of recommendations from the 2005 Wran NSW Mine Safety Review that are being fully implemented by the NSW Government. More than 290 audits were conducted at coal mines in NSW in the 12 months from January 2009. The audit provides tangible evidence of areas where compliance with the legislation could be improved, which will inform a cooperative approach between industry and the mine safety inspectors to address areas of concern, both at an industry-wide level and for individual coal mines.

The audit program results also show that many in the mining industry demonstrate commitment and innovation in developing and improving systems to manage the health and safety of mine workers and contractors.