An investigation has commenced at Fortescue’s Solmon Hub iron ore mine in Western Australia’s Pilbara region following a “significant incident,” which has since been discovered to be a ground fall.
The fatality, which happened during the morning hours local time on 30 September, has been tied to a “collapse of ground” but further details are pending further investigation. The worker has not been named, and it was not confirmed if any other miners were injured.
Fortescue is working closely with the WA Police and WA Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety to probe the incident, which an official told local media was not being treated as suspicious.
In the meantime, the mine is temporarily suspended.
“This is a very sad day for Fortescue and all our thoughts are with his family as we provide our full support to them at this very difficult time. The wellbeing of the entire Fortescue family is our priority with a range of support services available across our sites, including the Fortescue Chaplains and Employee Assistance Program,” Fortescue Chief Executive Officer Elizabeth Gaines said.
Solomon Hub, in the Hamersley Ranges, is located 60 km north of Tom Price. It comprises the Firetail, Kings Valley and Queens Valley mines, which together have a production capacity of 75 Mt/y.