Another death at Pilbara’s Christmas Creek mine site

A 23 year old mine worker died last night at Fortescue’s Christmas Creek iron ore mine in WA’s Pilbara from injuries he received in an accident at the heavy vehicle workshop.

Another man was injured in the incident and was airlifted to hospital suffering leg crush injuries.

The incident is the second death in the space of just three months at the Christmas Creek mine.

A Fortescue statement regarding the accident reads “The man and a workmate were undertaking maintenance work on a surface miner when the accident occurred.”

West Australian Secretary of the CFMEU Construction Division Mick Buchan said it was an extremely disturbing development that demands immediate investigation.

Mr Buchan said the union had received a significant number of complaints about safety concerns on the site in recent months.

“This young man’s tragic death is the second fatality in just six months at this site,” Mr Buchan said.

“Two deaths on the same site in less than half a year should be immediately raising red flags under any circumstances, but in the context of massive cost-cutting measures it is a deeply, deeply disturbing situation.

“Our union has been receiving a number of anonymous emails and messages from workers, worried about a range of safety concerns on site, who have been too intimidated by management to identify themselves.

“We want the full gamut of potential contributing factors to be examined in detail including potentially unsafe working hours on site, the capacity of unions to access the site to assess safety, the replacement of experienced workers with cheaper alternatives – the lot.

“This terrible death is a huge alarm that something is very, very wrong on this site. We need to get to the bottom of it quickly and accurately before anyone else is killed or hurt.”

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