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Health monitoring (mining)

Because of the specific risks associated with mining, there will be situations where health monitoring of workers is required. If there is no significant risk to a worker because of exposure to a hazard, then health monitoring is not required.

If a mine operator knows that silica’s naturally occurring deposits of mineral fibres or other known carcinogens are present in the soil, then health monitoring of workers must be conducted.

Mine operators must ensure that health monitoring is provided to mine workers if:

  1. there is a significant risk of an adverse effect on the worker's health because of the worker's exposure to a hazard associated with mining and
  2. valid techniques are available to detect that effect on the worker's health.

Health monitoring must be carried out at intervals determined by a registered medical practitioner with experience in health monitoring.

If the mine is operated by a sole mine operator with no workers then there is no requirement for health monitoring. However, the mine operator retains a duty to prevent exposure to themselves and others in close proximity to airborne dusts that are arising because of the mining activities.