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Work suspended at Australia’s Saraji coking coal mine

Operations at Australia’s Saraji coking coal mine in Queensland’s Bowen basin have been suspended following the death of a worker.

Australian-Japanese joint venture BHP Mitsubishi Alliance (BMA) confirmed a worker employed by one of its contracting partners was killed in a vehicle incident on the afternoon of 15 January. Resources Safety and Health Queensland (RSHQ) said two men were working in the fuel bay area of the open-cut mine around 12pm local time when the vehicle incident left a worker with significant crush injuries who later died from his injuries in hospital, RSHQ said on 16 January.

The state government agency is sending multiple investigators and inspectors from its serious incident investigation unit and coal inspectorate to the site. BMA said it was working closely with the mines inspectorate and relevant authorities.

“Union safety inspectors are at the site to conduct a thorough investigation,” said Mining and Energy Union Queensland president Mitch Hughes. “We will ensure no stone is left unturned in understanding what has occurred and preventing future fatalities and injuries.”

Saraji produced 1.01mn t for the July-September quarter, 1pc down on year-earlier output of 1.02mn t, according to BHP. It produced 4.6mn t in the 2022-23 fiscal year to 30 June.

Argus assessed Australian premium low-volatile hard coking coal on 15 January at $336.50/t on a fob basis, down by $0.15/t, while the tier-two hard coking coal price was at $285.50/t fob Australia that was down by $0.20/t.