Individual or Team Actions » LTA work method » LTA Standard Work Procedures (SWP)

20Inadvertent Operation Of Longwall Shearer

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

Between the end of night shift and the beginning of day shift, the longwall shearer had moved approximately 10 metres towards the main gate. The shearer was still moving when the day shift operators arrived at the face.

It was found that the operators often leave the Eickhoff remotely controlled shearer energised but with no motors running at the end of shift. No faults were identified with the remote control system to account for the uncontrolled movement.

It has been established that the remote controller is capable of operating the shearer from a distance of 75 metres when in creep mode, with the normal operating range being 6 to 9 metres.

Identified Root Causes:

The most likely cause was that an operator pressed the haulage button when leaving at the end of shift or when approaching the shearer at the commencement of the shift.

Energy Type(s) Involved:

Uncontrolled movement of plant

Equipment Type(s):

Longwall Shearer

Root & Contributing Cause(s):

LTA equipment design

LTA parkup

LTA Standard Work Procedures (SWP)

LTA work method

Stated or Potential Consequence(s):

Plant damage

Potential Injury

Potential serious injury

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

That standard operating procedures for remotely controlled mobile equipment include that remote operation is disabled and power to the trailing cable is switched off when the operator is not in attendance at the machine.


Queensland Government Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI)


Here are the results.


Reference Type:

Safety Alert #76

Mine Type:

Underground Mine > Underground Coal Mine


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





Australia, Queensland

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