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'Investigations ongoing' after driller's assistant horror injury at Cobar mine

Western Plains App

Luke Williams

08 June 2024, 3:40 AM

'Investigations ongoing' after driller's assistant horror injury at Cobar mine  CSA Mine. Image: metal acquisitions group.

A NSW Resources Regulator spokesperson has told the Western Plains App that investigations into the horrific injury of a Cobar miner are still going almost two months after the incident, with details emerging of how the incident played out. 


On May 9 this year, the NSW Resources Regulator launched the investigation into what is calling "a serious incident at CSA mine near Cobar in central NSW. 


The CSA mine  is located 11 kilometres north-west of Cobar. At two kilometres deep, it is one of Australia’s deepest underground mines. 


It is operated 24 hours a day and seven days a week, employing 500 people most of whom live in Cobar. 


Metal Acquisitions Corp took over ownership of the mine – one of Australia's highest grade mines in Australia. 


Image: miningtechnology.com 


The Western Plains App understands that Two workers operating a drill rig were conducting diamond drilling at the 8470 EXP level of the mine about 1.35am on 11 April 2024.  

In a statement the NSW Resources Regulator said  "The driller’s assistant was operating an overshot, which, when not in use, was normally positioned on the jump up stand".  

An overshot is a long, steel, rod-like object component of a mine's wireline systems. 

It said there was then a "miscommunication" meant that the driller's assistant returned to the stand to position himself so the assistant driller could insert the overshot into a tube the driller's assistant was holding. 

During this, the driller’s assistant fell backwards off the stand onto the ground about half a metre below and became unconscious, suffering serious head injuries.  

PHOTO: A mine worker holding an overshot. Image: Im-mining.com 


The driller saw the overshot suspended by a cable about one metre from the top of the mast, swinging back and forth.  

The injured worker was taken to Cobar District Hospital and later transferred to Westmead Hospital.  

In a statement to the Western Plains App the Regulator confirmed that the investigation has begun and is still ongoing. 

"The Regulator is investigating the cause and circumstances of the incident and will explore the equipment involved, plant design and operation, training and procedures".