The company was charged following the death of a worker at the Brockman 2 iron ore mine in August 2011.
|Date:||Monday, 26 October 2015|
Pilbara Iron Company Pty Ltd, a subsidiary of Rio Tinto, has been fined $70,000 for failing to provide a safe working environment after the death of 27-year-old fitter Brent Glew at the company’s Brockman 2 iron ore mine in 2011.
On 16 August 2011, Mr Glew and two other workers were conducting maintenance on a front end loader in the mine’s workshop.
The work required the removal and suspension of a tilt cylinder and, while suspended from a crane, the 1400kg cylinder slipped, fell and struck Mr Glew.
An investigation by the Department of Mines and Petroleum found that none of the workers held the appropriate rigging qualifications or were properly certified for high risk work.
Rio Tinto pleaded guilty to failing to provide a safe working environment and were sentenced in Perth Magistrates Court last week.
State Mining Engineer Andrew Chaplyn said Mr Glew’s death was an avoidable tragedy.
“This has been a heartbreaking, life- changing event for Mr Glew’s family, friends and co-workers,” Mr Chaplyn said.
“It is a tragic reminder of what can happen when safety isn’t given the priority it deserves.
“Every worker should be entitled to return home safely to their family and friends at the end of a shift or swing.”
Mr Chaplyn said that since the incident occurred the company had put in place a number of changes to its safety procedures.
“Rio Tinto has implemented a number of changes to ensure similar incidents do not occur again across its mining operations,” he said.
“However, this provides little comfort to the family, friends and co-workers impacted by the tragic death of Mr Glew.
“The only way to avoid similar tragedies is to ensure safety is the number one priority across Western Australia’s mine sites.”
Pilbara Iron Company Pty Ltd, a subsidiary of Rio Tinto, has been fined $70,000 for failing to provide a safe working environment.