Our occupational health program is focussed on prevention strategies. Our first line of defence is to make adjustments to work practices and the work environment, followed by monitoring then treatment of health or injury issues as a last resort.
Health issues are generally in line with most mining sites, with an obvious focus on lead. Our key concerns are around monitoring and minimising lead levels, noise, slips, trip and fall hazards, heat stress, dust exposure, fatigue and hazards associated with general musculoskeletal degeneration.
Our health and hygiene strategies include:
- surveillance to identify, monitor and control the health hazards
- keeping exposure to hazardous conditions below the relevant Australian standards
- providing safe work organisation and practices, including work place design, equipment maintenance and materials handling
- providing information, education, training and guidance on occupational health and occupational hygiene issues, safety, ergonomics and personal protection equipment
- monitoring changes to worker health over the course of their employment, and providing service to help our workers maintain their health through their working life
- facilitating the rehabilitation and return to work duties in an optimal timeframe, with on-site physiotherapy
- providing a well-equipped cardio and weights gym and many sporting facilities
- providing weekly core strengthening classes open to all employees and contractors
- providing individually tailored exercise and wellness programs for employees and contractors
- providing first aid and emergency treatment with on-site paramedics.
Blood lead monitoring
We take the monitoring of blood levels very seriously and enforce strict protocols to reduce the risk of exposure to lead in the workplace.
We follow the National Standard for the Control of Inorganic Lead at Work (NOHSC:1012) and the National Code of Practice for the Control and Safe Use of Inorganic Lead at Work (NOHSC:2015) as a guide for the control of blood lead levels in our people.
MRM sets its medical removal limit below this standard of 50 micorgrams per decilitre (µg/dL). Men with blood-lead concentration levels of 36µg/dL or greater must be removed from the workplace until concentrations are below 24µg/dL. Women should not have a blood-lead concentration that exceeds 10µg/dL.Pregnant or breastfeeding females are excluded from medium and high risk work areas.