TAKING STEPS: CS Energy, Anglo American and Batchfire are confident they are doing all they can to prevent cases of Covid-19.
TAKING STEPS: CS Energy, Anglo American and Batchfire are confident they are doing all they can to prevent cases of Covid-19.

How CQ power stations and mines are dealing with Covid-19

WITH just under 2,000 employees across the Callide Power Station, Callide Mine and Dawson Mine, stringent measures are required to prevent Covid-19 cases.

An Anglo American spokesperson said there have been no reductions to workforce and contractor employment at the Dawson Mine so far in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

"Across Anglo American's operations and in line with Federal and State government guidelines, all non-essential work travel has been restricted and site visits have been restricted to 'business-critical only'," spokesperson said.

"Across our operations, we have stringent measures in place to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, including travel restrictions, revised work practices and increased hygiene controls and cleaning.

"Among other measures, we are staggering workforce movements, restricting the number of personnel allowed in vehicles and in the cabs of mining equipment, and have moved some meetings outdoors while maintaining regulated social distance between workers.

"We are in regular communication with our workforce and our key contracting partners to ensure our approach is supportive of people's need to self-isolate, and is aligned and comprehensive."

The spokesperson also said as part of this process, Anglo American are undertaking health screening and have health plans in place to support self-isolation, where required.

Temperature screening at Anglo American sites is currently being investigated.

A CS Energy spokesperson reported there are no known or reported cases of COVID-19 at CS Energy sites.

The spokesperson said that CS Energy has deferred non-critical work that does not impact on the operation of the power stations.

"We have segregated critical operational and maintenance staff to reduce any potential risk of infection," spokesperson said.

"We have also reduced non-essential personnel at sites by supporting our people to work from home wherever possible.

"CS Energy is planning for additional measures that may be required, such as roster changes and increased segregation of key employees."

Batchfire Health and Safety manager Donia Walton said staff at Callide Mine are taking all

precautions in accordance with State and Federal Government direction to manage the risk of COVID-19 within the workplace and our community.

"Protocols cover among other matters access and entry (to site) screening, travel, social distancing, workplace hygiene and sanitisation and isolation actions," Ms Walton said.

Batchfire Resources Business Head Chris Coombes said Batchfire stopped all non-essential travel to site by visitors and non-core services well over a week ago.

"The current Australian Government guidelines on those who have travelled internationally or interstate were in effect pre-emptively put in place several weeks ago," Mr Coombes said. "Currently, a workplace access protocol has been implemented including mine entry notices to capture any persons who have either travelled overseas recently, had close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 or are experiencing "flu like" symptoms."

Additionally, Mr Coombes stated Batchfire aren't planning to shut down at Callide Mine but instead are actually planning to accelerate production in the near future thereby providing continuing employment opportunities for the Biloela community.

"It is fitting that we are able to provide continuing employment considering the wider impact of COVID-19," Mr Coombes said.

"Over the past few days we have been interviewing potential production trainees as we are working hard to continue business as normal in these very un-normal circumstances.

"As a low cost, low margin producer of Thermal Coal into the Queensland Electricity grid (approx. 17 per cent), Batchfire provides an essential service to the people of Queensland and the local community of Biloela."


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