MINING AND BENEFICIATION
Mining operations involve significant hazards that may result in serious injuries, loss of life, production disruption or damage to equipment. Safety is a priority in the industry and responsible mining companies are committed to improving safety performance through policies, systems and practices throughout. The goal is to prevent accidents and minimise exposure of people to toxic or hazardous materials and situations.
Permit to Work
The “permit to work” is accepted practice for controlling non-routine work in hazardous situations. The permit controls the precautions that need to be taken, the competencies of each member of the working party and the isolations needed to work safely.
The permit is initiated and then prepared together with a risk assessment for the work to be done. Once accepted the permit serves as the controlling document for all work taking place, including changes during the job, handing over the plant back to production and so on.
In the event of an audit or an incident, the permit is important evidence that the procedures were followed and the persons involved have taken all reasonable precautions in the circumstances.
IntelliPERMIT is proven in mining around the world
IntelliPERMIT software is proven in mining operations for managing safe work, isolations, teams (including contractors) and competencies.
The computerised “intelligent” rules engine is customised to the specific safety procedures on the mine. Competencies can be checked against training records and learning management systems. Site access and exit can be checked against the status of the relevant permit. Over time the rules are enhanced by examining compliance data in the system. Because the system is computerised permits can be “aware” of related permits, work taking place in the same area etc. Permits can be linked to maintenance work orders and many customers link IntelliPERMIT to SAP planned maintenance system.
The permits can also be linked to plant data from the control systems to assess the state of the plant as an additional check. The computerised information greatly enhances the integrity of each permit and significantly reduces risk when working in hazardous mining operations.
The IntelliPERMIT implementation team won an award in BHP in 2005 for the most innovative solution contributing to improving safety
BHP is the largest diversified resources company in the world, with tier-1 assets in the iron ore, coal, copper and petroleum sectors.
- IntelliPERMIT was first implemented at BHP’s Manganese operations in South Africa and in the Northern Territory of Australia between 2005 and 2009. While these operations were demerged into South32 in 2015, BHP continues to successfully manage their permits and isolations with IntelliPERMIT.
- IntelliPERMIT went live at Port Hedland and Finucane Island Iron Ore export port operations and at the new Jimblebar mine in Western Australia during 2014. Based on the success of the system at these sites, the system is rolled out to other iron ore mines in the Pilbara region, including an interface with SAP PM.
- BHP operates a portfolio of coal mines in the Bowen Basin region of Queensland in Australia. These operations are Australia’s largest coal producer and supplier of seaborne metallurgical coal. IntelliPERMIT has been progressively rolled out to these operations, including the Hay Point port, since mid-2014. This implementation features integration with the site’s learning management and access control systems. This allows user competencies to be validated against the master data from these systems, and also for users to be authenticated and to sign permits using their access cards.
Rio Tinto, a mining company with operations in 35 countries worldwide, has selected IntelliPERMIT to be used at the Gudai-Darri iron ore mine in Western Australia.
Safe work is a major objective for companies operating port environments. In this article we will highlight some special considerations when implementing a permit to work (PTW) system in a port.