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Edition 14, December 2016
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Queensland Mines Rescue Service

 

Head Office 

49 Garnham Drive 

Dysart Q 4745 

 

PO BOX 156 

Dysart Q 4745 

Ph: 07 4958 2244 

Fax: 07 4958 2740 


Leading Rescue 24/7...

2016 has been a year of implementing new activities and areas of focus for QMRS whilst maintaining our traditional services to the underground coal industry. The last quarter of the year has seemed the busiest of all as we engage with increasingly broader sections of the industry.
 
The national competition held in October at Kestrel Mine was a great success and congratulations to Oaky Nth and Grosvenor Mines in taking out 2nd and 3rd places respectively.  In November QMRS facilitated a surface mines rescue challenge, held at Cameby Downs, which was a great event and a pleasure to see a return of these activities for surface mines which had dropped out of the annual calendar in recent years. Hopefully this can grow into the future to involve other mines in other regions of Qld.
 
The Level 1 emergency simulation conducted at Grasstree Mine saw mines rescue respond and be deployed as part of a very effective response to a realistic mine emergency.  Well done to all mines rescue team members involved and to the mine itself for the way the event was handled.
 
The recent board meeting saw approval given to acquire a new land area close to Blackwater which will allow services provided to the southern Bowen Basin to be expanded and enhanced.  In addition the board approved the purchase from NSW Mines Rescue of virtual reality technology to be integrated into the training provided by QMRS. 2017 is already shaping as another exciting period of growth and implementing new ideas.
 
Please enjoy the following articles which provide details of the activities QMRS has been engaged in over the last 3 months and I would take this opportunity to wish all a merry Xmas and enjoyable New Year.


David Carey
Chief Executive Officer

Team Member Representative - Shaun Dando

The QMRS AGM and quarterly Board of Directors meeting was held in Dysart in early November. With Mick Madden stepping down from the Chairman’s position, Peter Baker was elected as a Director and Brett Garland appointed as our new Chairman. I wish to acknowledge and thank Mick for his guidance throughout my time on the Board. I have appreciated his experience and counsel as I continue to learn the role and responsibilities of a Director.

With 2016 rapidly drawing to a close, I wish to take the opportunity to congratulate all those personnel who have succeeded in joining QMRS as team members throughout the year either as Underground, Inertisation or Emergency Response team members. To those who have maintained their active team member status, or been involved with improving our capability and organisation, thank you for your commitment.

As Mines Rescue personnel we are trained to respond to emergency situations, but do not underestimate how significant an impact we can have in our workplaces in preventing or reducing the escalation of incidents. We must all continue to be vigilant, committed and prepared.
QMRS team members recognised during the year for significant service to Mines Rescue were as follows:
 
 10 Years  15 Years  20 Years  30 Years
 Richard Borg  Jonathon Borg  Michael Farrag  Stephen Reed
 Lee Brunker  Shannon Doherty    
 Boyd Buschmann  Raymond Smith    
 Kenneth Dougan      
 Brock Heumiller      
 David Hicks      
 Matthew Jewell      
 Benjamin Lang      
 Leith Luckel      
 Giuseppe Martorana      
 Jason O’Connor      
 Nila Suluvale-Aiofaiva      
 Brenden Warren      
 George Willett      
On a slightly different tack, in a recent conversation with a coal mine worker he made the observation that in his few years as a miner he had been fortunate to meet a number of inspiring individuals. They have been willing to share information, knowledge and experiences, so that he and others do not have to repeat the mistakes of the past. He remarked that each of these individuals usually had a story to tell as to why they were so passionate.  Unfortunately, the reasons were generally because they had been involved in, or knew of, the tragic or catastrophic results of incidents in our industry.

There are many stories walking around on our mine sites, and we must take the time to listen and apply those lessons. Whilst we are unable to change the past, we can definitely influence the future!

Please be safe this Christmas, appreciate your family and friends and for those among us that are facing challenges at present, our thoughts are with you.

WHS - Steve Dawe

Merry Christmas All
 
OHS around the stations are continuing to improve and as a whole this year it has been very pleasing to see us continue to maintain and influence changes around the stations.
 
Training for 2016 has concluded with round 6 for the Northern Zone hosted at Dysart Station whilst the Southern Zone visited Oaky North Mine.  We utilised a different approach to the training for round 6 where team members were able to complete a level 4 emergency desktop based scenario in teams to plan for and deploy under CABA into the affected mine. The outcomes from the desktop scenario became the run for the day culminating in most cases in ways to deal with a heating.  Using the QMRS guidelines and the CABA control charts was a good lead in for the day and the scenario gave team members opportunities to table and discuss a wide range of topics including map reading, scale, ventilation, gas makes, blood saturations as well as mining methods directly and indirectly relevant to the scenario.  Feedback from team members was on a whole positive and reflects a step change in the way training will be conducted at QMRS.  All members gained something of value from these sessions regardless of how much mining and rescue experience they have.  It was great to see the more experienced guys taking the time to coach and mentor the newer team members during the round.
 
Round 1 for 2017 will be hosted at each station respectively and will cover Fire Fighting principles, extinguishment and equipment necessary for fighting various fires.  It’s going to be scorching Central Queensland weather early in the year so make sure you prepare and hydrate accordingly prior to and whilst at training.  Looking forward to seeing you there!
 
The staff at QMRS have finally completed their 2016 health program and we now have a good snapshot for employee health goals moving into 2017.  The staff profile here shares commonalities with the Australian population as a whole so next time you visit the station or see one of the staff out at your respective mine site feel free to come and have a chat about some of the progress the staff are making towards improving their overall health and well-being.  Leading into 2017 I’m sure there will be some New Year resolutions made around these topics as well.
 
Well done to all the teams that participated in the Competitions this year with the extra preparation and training that each team puts into these events only strengthens the skill level and confidence that each of these team members takes back to the mine site.
 
I hope you have all enjoyed the training in 2016 and for those travelling for work or holidays during the festive break please travel safe and have a Merry Christmas! 

Surface Training Operations Manager - Mark Freeman

First Response Training
QMRS has been providing training days for Oaky North over the past few months. Delivery of training in firefighting, inflatable stoppings, high expansion foam, CABA operations and extrications have been an excellent source of further learnings and experience for participants.

Planning is in place for the 2017 calendar to continue with the training days at Oaky North as well as the running of the pilot program for the In-Seam Response Course.

Open Cut Challenge
On the 30th of November, QMRS facilitated the Southern Region Mines Rescue Challenge at Yancoal’s Cameby Downs Mine. The day was a great success, I would like to congratulate the site for putting their hand up to host the challenge.  It is a huge impost for an operation and it is genuinely appreciated.  A huge thank you to the assessing staff for how they have shared their knowledge and experience with the teams. It is hoped that the teams will take this information back to their sites and share the learning to develop a more effective operational readiness.  

The 2017 Southern Region challenge is scheduled for New Acland Mine.  We are looking forward to bigger and better opportunities for all involved.

Open Cut Emergency Response Training
Open Cut ERT Training has finished for the year with a couple of milestones.  With Road Crash Rescue being the last module the Yarrabee students have completed our first RII30715 - Certificate III in Surface Mine Emergency Response and Rescue.  I would like to thank Yarrabee Mine for their support in the venture and looking forward to continuing the training in the future.

Skills maintenance training has also finished for the year.  Thanks to our clients Dawson, Oaky Creek and Kestrel for their support.

For any inquiries, please contact Mark Freeman 0419 791 601 or the Blackwater Station on 07 4982 5369.

Blackwater Station
Welcome back to Kirsty Evans after her maternity leave. The station is getting its end of year clean up at the moment, one of the things that gets put off during the high tempo times. I would like to congratulate the Blackwater team on a great year and their commitment to quality training and presentation.

Open Cut ERT Training - confined space training exercise

Open Cut ERT Training - hazmat and firefighting

Open Cut ERT Training - vertical rescue and road crash rescue

Inertisation Operations Manager - Clive Hanrahan

Since out last newsletter, the GAG team has completed another stage of the commissioning of our General Electric engine.  The automation is now complete and testing carried out confirms it is working well.  The engine is considerably different to our old engines and will take quite a bit of getting used to.  The engine shows a number of different characteristics as it proceeds through the rev range.

Our new afterburner however, will need some modification to the flame stabiliser rings and fuel nozzles before it can be run again and we are aiming for this to occur mid next year.
A second Inertisation Team Recruit Training Program (New Recruit Course) was conducted in early December with the first operators coming through from Grosvenor Mine (3), 1 from Oaky North and 1 from North Goonyella. 

Our annual Inertisation workshop was conducted in late November with excellent attendance from all mines.  We had very informative discussions with personnel from Coregas on the use of liquid nitrogen and covered a number of engine maintenance topics.  

Best wishes to everyone, have a safe and wet Christmas.
Education Manager - Paul McCarthy

2016 has been an eventful year for QMRS Education and Training, and this is a good time to summarise the work in progress and the focus of work to be done in 2017.

Achievements in 2016
There were several notable achievements in QMRS education during 2016, particularly with the integration of the LMS into our training programs and ongoing work with Simtars RTO to ensure that quality training is provided to our industry clients. QMRS underground and open cut mines rescue team recruit training programs were reviewed and updated during the year, and the Inertisation Team recruit course was registered at ASQA .

Registered Training Organisation (RTO)

The QMRS Education Department has continued working with Simtars RTO to accredit and register the QMRS core Level 3 courses.  The competency units that underpin the ERT course are on the RTO scope, and Statements of Attainment have been sent to all students who have successfully completed the course, currently within about a two-week issue period.

Work is also continuing on the registration of the units underpinning the 10114NAT Certificate III in Underground Coal Mines Emergency Response and Rescue course on the RTO scope.  When the competency units are on scope, the RTO can issue Statements of Attainment to students and staff who have completed the course and RTO requirements.  This work will also be valuable as a template to working through the same accreditation/RPL process for the 10242NAT Certificate III in Underground Coal Mine Inertisation Team Operations course in 2017.

Document Management System/Learning Management System
QMRS education and training operations were transferred to the DMS and LMS during the first half of 2016.  Archived training information is stored in the DMS, and the LMS is now used by our training staff to deliver the Level 3 competency unit compliant core courses and other training programs in the curriculum.  

The transfer process to online delivery has been a cooperative effort, with considerable input and feedback from our training staff and the RTO.  The course delivery process, from signing in to signing off has been simplified, with considerable time-saving benefits to the QMRS training staff.  Key documents such as enrolment and feedback forms and the full range of training materials are readily available in the LMS for each course.
Training information now flows freely between QMRS and the RTO, which has minimised the time required to issue Statements of Attainment to trainees who have completed their courses and has enabled the RTO to perform their auditing functions from their offices in Redbank, at any time.  QMRS and RTO staff can be on the LMS at the same time, thus information searches and training-related questions can be dealt with, with the full participation of both organisations to streamline the process.
Level 3 Core Courses
The Level 3 core courses in the QMRS curriculum are dynamic training products, each continuously undergoing development to reflect changes in equipment and methodology as they occur.  Course materials are in the LMS, which is used to archive student records, course participation and assessment evidence.

     a)     10114NAT Certificate III in Underground Coal Mines Emergency Response and Rescue:  
             Block release and day release course materials (resource book, assessments, delivery plans) are currently being reviewed by the RTO to establish compliance and exit points for the issuing of Statements of Attainment. An RPL project is also being completed to accredit all active team members, and QMRS training staff.

     b)     10242NAT Certificate III in Underground Coal Mine Inertisation Team Operations:
              The course was registered with ASQA on 1 July, 2016.  The course now includes a control panel operator module, which was added to the previous modules for training the water and fuel supply operators and the engine attendants.

     c)     ERT (Open Cut) Course:
             Competency units for all course modules have been put on the RTO scope.  At the time of writing, 113 Statements of Attainment have been issued by the RTO for rescue team members who have completed the courses
Looking Forward to 2017

Training content changes to meet with new equipment and processes, and we now have a robust DMS/LMS system to archive old materials and quickly incorporate new materials into the education and training systems.  Plans for 2017 include completing the advanced First Aid and Statutory Fire Officer courses, and work with the RTO to complete the RPL documentation and procedures for both underground and inertisation team members.     
 
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all the QMRS staff and team members.  I hope that you enjoy your time with your families and loved ones over the holidays.

Operations Manager - Ray Smith

QMRS delivered yet another successful MEMS course which was held in November with mines sending attendees from Grosvenor Mine, Oaky No 1, North Goonyella and George Fisher Mine.  The new manual was presented at this course with the new scenarios due in February 2017 QMRS is currently working on opencut and metalliferous underground scenarios.
Level 2 exercises are well underway with Grosvenor, Ensham and Moranbah North Mines having completed theirs for 2016 and planning has commenced at Carborough Downs, Oaky No 1 and Broadmeadow due before the close of the year.  Grasstree Mine was selected for the Level 1 exercise with excellent results for QMRS. MRAS was utilised to ensure teams went underground with their safety in mind.  

The mine utilised their tracking device as well as underground cameras (pictured below) to assist in finding and tracking missing persons and mines rescue teams.  Two teams were available to attend the underground incident within the first two hours.
Congratulations and well done to the next generation of recruits who successfully completed the October/November recruit course delivered at the Dysart Rescue Station.
October 20th saw the 54th Australian Mines Rescue competition held at Kestrel Mine. Congratulations to Appin Colliery from Southern Mines Rescue Station taking first place with Oaky North coming in second and Grosvenor Mine in third place.  

Welcome to Luke Addis as District Assessor from Broadmeadow Mine and Darren Prince from QMRS. Luke has captained the Moranbah North Team in 2009 as well as the Broadmeadow Team since 2010.  Luke brings a new vision and youth to the District Assessor Team alongside Darren's experience and knowledge.  Darren has captained the Crinum Team in the past and has been a team member for twenty-two years, the last five and a half years being employed by QMRS.  

Farewelling Mark Freeman from the team, Mark has been of great assistance to the team since 2011. We wish him all the best in the running of Open Cut Competitions.
District Assessors Luke Addis and Darren Prince, farewelling Mark Freeman
to Open Cut Competitions
The Historical Society at Ipswich held it's 50th Jubilee on October 8th.  QMRS were invited to put on a demonstration throughout the day.  With spectators gathering around the demo area waiting for the exercise to commence, Captain Steve Reed said a few words to some of the older Mines Rescue persons from the Ipswich region.  It was then passed over to ex-rescue man Greg Rowan to narrate the exercise to the ever growing crowd.  The exercise consisted of one coal mine worker trapped in a continuous miner and another had been run over by the shuttle car due to an outburst which had occurred.  Airbags were utilised to remove the trapped person from under the shuttle car and a Care-vent was applied to the injured person in the continuous miner.

A big shout out goes to the volunteers on the day - Steve Reed and Mark Shepherdson from Oaky No 1, Scott Barker from Grosvenor Mine and Brent Stewart from QMRS.

Operations Manager Equipment - Brent Stewart

As the end of the year approaches, the equipment team is in full swing to ensure all rescue equipment and substations are in a fully operational status prior to the Christmas break.  The technicians have started to utilise their new test equipment which includes the RZ7000 BG4 calibration tool and the CAREvent test kit to keep all our current units within compliance.
 
Another successful Australian Competition was supported by Cameron Matthews and Cameron Smith to help keep the day running smoothly with minimal delays due to their hard work in the preparation, running of the substation and the clean-up at the end of the day.  We would like to thank all team members that helped throughout the day in assisting with the cleaning and storage of equipment.
 
Our electronic record keeping for all equipment and maintenance is becoming more streamlined for ease of access and to remove the hard copy load from the equipment department.  The HardCat system is being utilised more effectively for both our equipment register and work order assignment and completion.  I would like to thank the administration staff for all their hard work to assist me in keeping the process moving forward at a steady rate.
 
During this last quarter we have also been busy with assisting with the training for Oaky North at the surface facility at Oaky #1 and assessing for the Open Cut Challenge which occurred at Cameby Downs Coal mine near Chinchilla.  The Oaky North training included theory and practical training in firefighting, airbags, CABA and turbex operations.  It was a good opportunity for us to help ensure all mine workers have an understanding of their emergency response equipment and its operation.
 
I also had the pleasure of assisting in the second block release session that was conducted in 2016 for the Mine Inertisation Unit.  It is always enjoyable seeing the trainees putting into operation the skills they have learnt over the 2 weeks they spend with the unit.
 
From myself, Cameron Matthews and Cameron Smith, we wish you all a safe and enjoyable Christmas and New Year with your family and friends.
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Queensland Mines Rescue Service Limited · 49 Garnham Drive · PO Box 156 · Dysart, Qld 4745 · Australia

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