Safety performance measurements for industry

How is safety performance measured?

Safety performance can be measured in a number of ways, usually through a combination of lag (output) and lead (input) indicators.

  • Lag indicators ? measure outcomes after an incident (e.g. incident rate, lost time work injury), and is effectively a measure of past results
  • Lead indicators ? measure activities to prevent or reduce the severity of an incident in the present or future (e.g. safety training, safety audits).

Why measure safety performance?

Measuring performance allows the review of an industry or organisation’s safety and health performance over time. This may identify trends or clusters of incidents that can be tackled to prevent workplace deaths, injury and disease.

Safety performance information also provides feedback on the effectiveness of controls and systems of work, allowing continual improvements to be made.

Measuring performance allows questions to be answered such as:

  • Are we achieving our overall health and safety aims and objectives?
  • Are we getting better or worse over time in controlling hazards and risks?
  • Are we managing safety and health effectively (doing it right)?
  • Do we have an effective health and safety management system in place across all parts of the organisation?
  • How do we compare with others? Can we learn from them?

Identifying trends in safety performance

Industry is required to lodge a variety of information with the department regarding incidents and workforce numbers.

The industry data and results of selected investigations are subsequently released as:

  • annual safety performance reports
  • summaries for industry awareness
  • mining fatality summaries
  • significant incident reports and safety bulletins
  • additional reports and surveys.

The department produces these resources to help industry identify trends in safety performance and start making the necessary changes. When combined with site or operational statistics, these tools can assist mining operations in improving their safety performance and moving towards a resilient safety culture.

Annual safety performance reports

Safety performance reports are published annually and cover the accident and injury statistics for the financial year.

They include information on:

  • fatal accidents
  • serious injuries
  • lost time injuries
  • workers’ compensation premiums
  • injuries by commodities
  • disabling injuries

for mining activities, and some statistics for exploration activities.

You can search for the safety performance reports and posters in the Safety statistics area and download them as a PDF.

Mining incident summaries

Mining incidents reported to Resources Safety since January 2010 have been edited and made available to the public as summaries for industry awareness. This resource is updated regularly and can be interrogated, viewed and the results exported to a Microsoft Excel file for analysis via the Safety Regulation System (SRS).

Search Summaries for industry awareness by the date, incident type and the operational area through the Safety Regulation System (SRS).

Mining fatality summaries

Information on workplace fatalities in Western Australian mines recorded since 1943 is available through a search facility in the Safety Regulation System (SRS).

Search mining fatality summaries by date or operational area through the Safety Regulation System (SRS).

Significant incident reports and safety bulletins

To share the learnings from investigations, the department issues a variety of safety alerts.

Significant incident reports - information about single incidents, accidents or fatalities
Safety bulletins - information about trends or clusters in reported accidents and incidents from a State, national or international perspective.

You can search for significant incident reports and safety bulletins in the Safety alerts area and download them as a PDF.

Report on fatal accidents in the Western Australian mining industry 2000-2012

A study undertaken by the department in 2013 and published in 2014 reviewed mining fatality reports for Western Australia from 2000 to 2012 inclusive. The aim was to identify some key activities and areas where improvements can be made. In the 13 years covered by the review, there were 52 mining-related deaths, with an average of four deaths per annum. Over this period, the industry workforce increased by 60,000.

Fatal accidents in the Western Australian mining industry 2000-2012 report - 2552 Kb

This report examines the fatal mining accidents that occurred in Western Australia over the 13-year period from 2000 to 2012, inclusive.

Other reports and surveys

Copies of the reports are available from Resources Safety. Please email your request to RSDComms@dmp.wa.gov.au

Safety behaviour survey of the WA mining industry (2002)

A safety behaviour survey was undertaken by the then-Mines Occupational Safety and Health Advisory Board (MOSHAB; superseded by MIAC) in 2002 to collect information from employees regarding their views on key safety issues, including perceptions of things that might lead to risk-taking behaviour on mine sites.

Report on drilling hazards (2000)

As part of MOSHAB’s inquiry into mining fatalities in September 1997, the Drilling Hazards Subcommittee prepared reports on its findings and recommendations. Due to the wide range of issues and recommendations raised by the Subcommittee, some outside its terms of reference, the Board commissioned the State Mining Engineer to prepare an Executive Summary and Action Plan of the Subcommittee reports. These were published in a single drilling hazard report in 2000.

Report on the effects of Cyclone Bobby (1995)

Cyclone Bobby swept Western Australia in 1995. It caused considerable damage and disruption to the State’s mining industry. Affected mine sites were surveyed and information on the cyclone’s impact is available in this report.