Mar 26, 2020

Strategies to separate FIFO workers from communities

Strategies to separate FIFO workers from communities A health checkpoint at Peabody’s Moorvale mine site.

The mining sector is implementing procedures under a national protocol to slow the spread of COVID-19, including strategies to separate FIFO workers from regional communities, the Queensland Resources Council says.

“We have worked with the industry across the country to develop national protocols to protect our staff, our families, our suppliers, our communities, our State, and our nation,” QRC chief executive Ian Macfarlane said.

“With the Queensland border now closed, resources workers travelling from interstate will also wear high-viz.  Companies will be encouraged to give their staff a letter detailing their work commitments, where they would be staying and how long.’

“For an industry that supported one in every seven jobs in Queensland before the coronavirus, we know the responsibility of keeping those 372,000 workers safe and protecting the safety of all Queenslanders.”

Mr Macfarlane said where staff had to travel by car or air transport, companies were committed to additional best practice guidelines including:

  • separating workers from the general public at airport departure and arrival;
  • social distancing on transport from airport to mine site and mine camp through the use of mine-owned bus or vehicles or chartered bus; and
  • separating visiting workers by restricting access from the local community.

He said QRC would also establish a working group of member companies to standardise measures.

These measures are in addition to a range of new procedures deployed and include:

  • health questionnaires for visitors/suppliers
  • temperature measurement at mine site entries and before flights to mine sites
  • improved separation procedures including head office staff working from home
  • staggered crib breaks, and
  • no non-essential visitors to mine sites.

Mr Macfarlane released the statement after hosting a call with almost 100 industry representatives and mayors from across the State and Queensland Government officials today.