Robin Chapple MLC
Member for the Mining and Pastoral Region
6 August 2010
NORSEMAN GOLD FATALITY: STATEMENT FROM ROBIN CHAPPLE MLC, Greens (WA) Spokesperson for Mining and Petroleum
It is with great sadness that I have learned of the death of a 60 year old mine worker at the Okay Mine operated by Norseman Gold, on August 5, 2010.
My deepest sympathies firstly go to the family of the deceased. I hope that there is a diligent and speedy investigation into all matters surrounding this unfortunate death that will bring some closure to the man’s friends, family and workmates.
This is another devastating incident in the WA mining industry and leaves me feeling at a personal level quite gutted.
The media would be aware that I have been asking a significant number of questions pertaining to Occupational Health and Safety standards at the Okay Mine’. Whilst we do not have the details of the accident to hand, it is obviously of concern that this man has died at a mine site that has been identified through Parliamentary Questions and papers tabled by the Minister for Mines and Petroleum as having a deficient safety culture, and which has been identified as having put undue pressure on workers.
I hope the Minister will ensure that there is a proper and diligent evaluation of this incident by people who have not been implicit in allowing the safety standards of the Okay Mine to have reached the deplorable level identified in the Questions, Answers and Tabled Papers.
The Minister, mining industry, the regulatory bodies and this particular mining company need to take a long, hard look at themselves to determine if they believe that the current state of affairs is acceptable.
To the Minister for Mines and Petroleum, I say that I have done as much as I could to alert you to the safety situation at Norseman Gold and elsewhere. It is now up to you to ensure that the state of affairs does not claim any more lives in the Industry.
Media Contact: Robin Chapple on 9486 8255