Otraco's Paraburdoo operations celebrate 20 years LTI free

Think back to what you were doing on 30 September, 1994. Paul Keating was our Prime Minister, we were all sobbing over The Shawshank Redemption and getting down to Salt-N-Pepa… and it was also the last day that our Otraco operation at Paraburdoo received a lost time injury. 

That’s right! On 1 October this year, Otraco’s Paraburdoo operations achieved the outstanding milestone of 20 years LTI free.

To celebrate, CEO, David Overall, travelled to site with COO – Downer Mining Services, Peter Newman, Chief Legal Counsel, Ian Briggs, CFO, Warwick McEvoy, and GM Otraco, Alistair Swanson, along with members of the Rio Tinto Paraburdoo senior management team, to thank and congratulate the team.  

A lot has changed on site over the past 20 years, including systems, and equipment type and size, but the team’s commitment to safety certainly hasn’t. They see their success as a combination of personal commitment from each team member, the development of a culture intolerant of risk, and a back-to-basics approach to managing Zero Harm.

They’re also proud of their partnering approach to working with the client, which has led to strong relationships, great communication and a common vision for a Zero Harm workplace. They have worked on various projects together, including a haul truck wheel changer (HTWC) prototype. This is an automated ‘robot’ that changes tyres on haul trucks, and eliminates exposure to manual handling, noise, vibration and line of fire.

The team has also implemented a stretching program that matches specific movements to specific tasks. This means that rather than doing 10 minutes of general stretches at the start of the day, a team member can come back into the crib room during their shift to use a fit ball or foam roller to stretch the body part that is about to get a workout. This has increased the overall wellness of the team and helped to eliminate manual handling injuries. 

This culture of always trying to do things better has led to low personnel turnover, which in turn contributes towards a workplace where everyone cares about their mates and takes care of each other.

Congratulations to the Paraburdoo team on this fantastic achievement.  

Downer Mining Executive Leadership Team & Otraco International Team

CEO, David Overall (front row, far left), with members of the Downer Mining Executive Leadership Team, Otraco management and site teams, and Rio Tinto site management team at a celebratory dinner at Paraburdoo.