Father of two Andrew Bray could not have known when he went into work on August 12, 2019, he would never return home.
- Andrew Bray was killed at a mine west of Pooncarie in August 2019
- A report outlined seven near misses or collisions in the three years prior to the accident
- The mine has since made a number of changes to reduce the likelihood of similar incidents
The 47-year-old was killed when a bulldozer collided with his white utility at Snapper Mine, 40 kilometres west of Pooncarie, just after 4:50pm that Monday afternoon.
The report into Mr Bray’s death has now been released to the public, and in it are nine recommendations to better identify hazards and manage risks to health and safety.
In its investigation, the NSW Resource Regulator highlighted that several basic safety practices and principles were not consistently monitored by Basin Sands Logistics, who were contracted to the site.
It included the failure to maintain a 50-metre driving distance and 20-metre safe parking distance between light and heavy vehicles.
Investigators also discovered that of the seven bulldozers operating at Snapper Mine at the time of the incident none of the vehicles “were fitted with any kind of side view mirrors or operational reversing cameras, proximity detection or collision avoidance systems”.
Near misses and collisions prior
The regulator also drew attention to the failure of mine operators to learn from seven collisions and near misses at the Snapper and nearby Ginkgo mines in the three years prior to the death of Mr Bray.
Since the tragedy, the mine has made remedial measures recommended in the final report to prevent similar incidents in the future.
Some of the changes are the creation of a designated parking area for light vehicles, as well as the installation of reversing cameras and side mirrors in seven bulldozers used on site.
Despite a number of oversights by Basin Sands Logistics, the report found the primary cause of Mr Bray’s death was his own failure to comply with a number of procedures when he:
- entered within the 50-metre work area of the bulldozer while it was operating
- positioned the light vehicle directly behind and within 10-15 metres of the bulldozer after instructing the operator to track backwards towards a nearby light tower; and
- failed to establish positive communication before entering the bulldozer’s work area, including not establishing and maintaining line of sight.
The report recommended clearer operating procedures and staff supervision when operating light and heavy vehicles, better training for blind spots, and ensuring communication guidelines were adhered to.