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Coal Inspectorate | Bulletin | No.208 V 1 | 16 December 2022

Bulldozer rollover events

What happened?

Bulldozer rollovers are a high-risk incident that can result in serious injury and death. They are also preventable.

There have been 10 rollover incidents on Queensland sites since December 2021, including the recent stockpile dozer entrapment incident (Safety Alert 420). Three other incidents occurred at surface mines in July, October and November this year. Six similar incidents occurred between December 2021 and June 2022. These incidents occurred at nine different surface mines.

How did it happen?

Incidents have included dozers working;

  1. on rehabilitation
  2. in bulk push
  3. during floor clean-up
  4. during bench preparation.

Rollovers occurred when the bulldozer was travelling forwards, in reverse and when parked. Some examples are shown in figures 1 to 4.

The New South Wales regulator has also highlighted similar incidents in that state and provided advice to operators.

Key issues

  • Failure by the machine operator to adequately assess the area before starting work.
  • Incorrect methods used to ascend/descend slope.
  • Supervisory monitoring or risk control application by operators was absent or ineffective.
  • Supervisor and operator's hazard identification was absent or ineffective.
  • Application of risk controls by supervisor and operator was absent or ineffective to manage identified hazards.
  • Defective equipment was permitted to continue in operation.
  • Supervisors did not ensure operator's training was complete.


All Site Senior Executives should regularly audit:

  • the effectiveness of supervisors' hazard identification and risk control skills and take corrective action when deficiencies are detected.
  • the system for recording and correcting equipment defects and take corrective action when deficiencies are found.
  • the shift task allocation against the training system and take corrective action when deficiencies are detected.

Every shift supervisor should:

  • confirm operators have identified all the hazards in their workplace.
  • confirm the proposed risk controls to manage the hazards will control the hazard risk.
  • monitor the effectiveness of the risk controls during the shift and take corrective action when deficiencies are detected.
  • require that ground implements (blades and rippers) are kept as low to the ground as possible during operation, particularly when operating on uneven surfaces.
  • review stockpiles to confirm that valve locations are easily and readily identifiable for operators.

Authorised by Peter Newman - Chief Inspector – Coal

Contact: Stephen Smith, Regional Inspector of Mines , 0436 658 225

Issued by Resources Safety & Health Queensland

Safety: This information is issued to promote safety through experience. It is not to be taken as a statement of law and must not be construed to waive or modify any legal obligation.
Placement: Place this announcement on noticeboards and ensure all relevant people in your organisation receive a copy, understand the content, findings and recommendations as applicable to their operation. SSEs should validate that recommendations have been implemented.