Failed or Absent Defences » LTA barriers

90Quarry Operator's Arm Caught In Unguarded Conveyor

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Brief Description of Incident/Accident & Description of Consequences/Outcomes:


A quarry operator was seriously injured when his arm was pulled into a conveyor.


The operator was cleaning along conveyor walkways while the plant was operating. When he brushed some loose rock from under a transfer trough his arm was pulled in between the belt and a support idler. The trough skirt plates stopped the belt from lifting off the idler and jammed his arm.

The operator could not stop the conveyor because there was no emergency stop (lanyard). The operator was able to wave down a passing truck driver who stopped the conveyor. The idler supports had to be cut with oxyacetylene so his arm could be freed.

Identified Root Causes:


There was a walkway on either side of the conveyor trough, but only the main walkway side was guarded and had an emergency stop. To get to the other side the operator had to climb down a level and crawl under the conveyor. Management said the unguarded side was not to be used while the plant was working. Two chains were used to stop access. There were no signs to warn people.

Energy Type(s) Involved:

Entrapment of person in conveyor

Equipment Type(s):

Conveyor Belt

Root & Contributing Cause(s):

LTA awareness

LTA equipment design

LTA guarding

LTA hazard identification

LTA isolation

LTA work method

Stated or Potential Consequence(s):

Potential Fatality

Serious Injury

Preventative/Recommended/Accepted Steps of Risk Mitigation, Points of Interest:

All mine sites:

Follow the Mines Inspection Act General Rule 2000. The General Rule 2000 requires all equipment and machinery to be properly guarded and protected to stop people from getting caught or hurt.

Remind people of the dangers of conveyors.

Review and revise safe work procedures and train people who work with or near conveyors.

Use Australian Standard AS 1755 – 2000, Conveyor – Safety Requirements as the minimum standard. The standard says:

All accessible nip points and shear points are to be guarded and emergency stops provided.

Guards to be either fixed enclosure guards or fixed distant guards.

Signs are to be well located.

Risk assessments are to be done to develop safe work procedures. These procedures should ensure conveyors are stopped and the energy isolated before any work is done on or around the conveyor. This includes housekeeping and cleaning.

EMESRT Risk(s):

Entanglement in machine parts

Entrapment from moving parts

Guards preventing contact

ISOLgate Checklist(s):

Download Entanglement in machine parts Checklist.

Download Entrapment from moving parts Checklist.

Download Guards preventing contact Checklist.


New South Wales Department of Primary Industries, Minerals and Petroleum


Here are the results.


Reference Type:

Mine Safety Report #SA02-12

EMESRT Risk(s):

Entanglement in machine parts

Entrapment from moving parts

Guards preventing contact

Mine Type:

Surface Mine


Potential & Kinetic - Mechanical > Moving machine part(s)





Australia, New South Wales

ICAM Categories

Organisational Factors

• LTA design

• LTA equipment design

• LTA guarding

• LTA guarding of worksite

• LTA risk assessment

Task or Environmental Conditions


Individual or Team Actions

• LTA awareness

• LTA hazard identification

• LTA isolation

• LTA work method

Failed or Absent Defences

• LTA barriers

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