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NZ mining needs to learn from Queensland - expert

Thursday 8 Nov 2012 9:42 a.m.

By 3 News online staff

In the wake of the damning report into the Pike River Mine explosion and New Zealand's governance of the industry, the Australian state of Queensland is being held up as an example of how the industry should be regulated.

Andrew Vickers, the head of Australia's coal mining union, has studied the Royal Commission report and says he was ‘appalled’ with the number of problems the commission found.

“It’s a litany of terrible, terrible errors, the placing of the main fan underground in the seam without explosion-proof panels, a fresh air base which was not a fresh air base, the constant outages caused by high methane levels not being reported through to the department, inadequate ventilation, no second means of egress, inadequate training of new miners, the list just goes on,” he told Firstline this morning.

Mr Vickers says Queensland tightened its safety laws by ‘learning the hard way’ and hopes New Zealand learns the same lessons in the wake of the Pike River disaster.

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