Australia's 2018 Victorian Mine Rescue Competition overview
The Gastech Victorian Mine Rescue Competition (VICMRC) has wrapped up for another year and it was another great event in 2018. This is a national event with both metal and coal rescue crews from Victoria and other states including New South Wales (NSW), Queensland and Western Australia participating over the last two decades. Kirkland Lake’s Fosterville Gold Mine in Victoria continued its successful year by taking home the Victorian Mine Rescue Competition trophy in the October competition. The Competition, in its 26th year, hosted nine teams across three days of scenarios designed to test and improve each team’s emergency response skills, including practical exercises in ropes rescue, first aid and search and rescue.
Fosterville also took out the award for overall safety while Mandalay Resources Costerfield Operation’s Ben Green received the Captain’s Trophy. In 2018, there were five Victorian teams along with four teams from NSW participate in the VICMRC. This year ERT crews attended from New Zealand and the Northern Territory to observe the competition.
Participating Teams in 2018 were:
Peabody Wilpinjong (NSW Open cut Coal)
Estate Services (Vic Open Cut Coal team)
Fosterville Gold (Vic U/G Metal team)
Mandaly Resources (Vic U/G metal team)
CFA Oscar 1 (Vic Volunteer Mine Rescue Squad attached to the CFA)
Evolution Mining (NSW Metal team - Open cut)
Newcrest Cadia Valley Operations (NSW U/G metal team)
Peak Gold Mines (NSW U/G Metal team)
North Parkes (NSW U/G Metal team)
Fire: The fire fighting event sponsored by Risk Response and Rescue, required crews to respond to an underground fire and treat a number of casualties. This event was won by Fosterville.
Search and rescue: The search and rescue event sponsored by ISH24, required crews to search a section of the mine following a seismic event and rescue multi casualties, the crews also had to use an air bag to remove an object from a casualty. This event was won by Peak Gold Mines.
Ropes: The rope rescue event sponsored by Mawsons, required crews to transport a team member up to a landing in the mill then set up a system to transport the crew member to a designated located specified by the adjudicators. This event was won by CFA Oscar 1.
First aid: The first aid event sponsored by Fero Group, required crews to manage a multiple casualty event underground following a simulated seismic event, crews were required to manage time critical injuries and this was a real test for the team medics. This event was won by Fosterville Gold Mine.
Skills: The skills event sponsored by Deep core drilling, required crews to complete crews to respond to a motor vehicle incident involving dangerous gases, the crews knowledge of gas detection processes were tested by the team from GasTech. This event was won by Cadia.
BA practical: The BA practical was a little different this year as there was a BA component followed by a snatch and grab exercise requiring crews to search and rescue a casualty. This event was sponsored by Dräger and won by Estate Services.
Theory: The theory exam consisted of questions from the various mine rescue disciplines. This event was won by Cadia.
Spence herd: The Spence herd event required teams to build a raft of material provided and transport whole team across the local swimming pool, the task had to be completed safely and quickly. This event was sponsored by SafeScape and won by Peak Gold Mines.
Pop up events: The pop up put teams together to manage multiple casualty scenarios following a simulated building collapse and motor vehicle accidents, the rescue crews had to manage large volumes of injured people in a tight work space in a compressed time frame. The teams performed very well. These were not scored events and were targeted at building collaboration and cooperation between the rescue crews.
Grain engulfment tutorial: This year we added another element to the event with Daniel McMahon and the crew from ISH24 delivering a short grain engulfment tutorial and demonstration at their Bendigo facility.
Noel Justice Award: Andrew Burt from Coal Services NSW Mines Rescue and Jamie Pope from Northparkes Mines
Best captain: Ben Green - Mandalay
Safety award: This was won by Fosterville
Overall competition winner was Fosterville - Congratulations
Exercise lead adjudicators
· Fire fighting – Alun Hughson
· Search and rescue – Andrew Burt
· First aid – Caz Cole – Sinclair
· Rope rescue – OM Craig Hooper Vicses
· Team skills – Andrew Gibson
· Spence herd – Michael Gibbons
· BA practical – Jol Jardine
· Competition head adjudicator – Simon Delander
Source: Mine Rescue Challenge