Funeral fundraiser set up for Queensland miner
A miner who died while working the night shift at a central Queensland open-cut coal mine on the weekend was one of the good blokes, always up for a laugh or a chat, his friends say.
Jack Gerdes, 27, was fatally injured at the Baralaba North Coal Mine, operated by project solutions group Golding, early on Sunday.
The experienced mining operator was at an excavator in the open mining pit about 1.30am on Sunday to begin waste mining activities.
He was found on the stairs of the excavator with injuries to his head, face and limbs, after he failed to respond to a truck that turned up for loading, Golding said in a statement.
It's believed he got caught between the body of the excavator and the safety rails of the stairs.
The circumstances leading up to the fatality is the focus of an investigation. The mine site remains shut down but could reopen on Wednesday.
A GoFundMe campaign has been set up by Mr Gerdes' devastated colleagues to help his family pay the funeral expenses.
"Jack was one of the good ones," the page, under the heading 'Saying Goodbye to Jack', says.
"Always up for a laugh or a chat. He touched so many people with his loyalty, compassion and dry sense of humor [sic]. He always had a smile and will be missed greatly."
The campaign has so far raised more than $2200 of the $20,000 target.
Mr Gerdes' death is the sixth mining fatality - four of whom were coal workers - in Queensland in the past 12 months.
It prompted crisis talks on mine safety on Monday between the Queensland government, representatives of the mining industry and unions including the QRC, CFMMEU and AWU.
After the meeting, State Mines Minister Anthony Lynham announced a review into fatal coal mine incidents would be expanded to include mineral mine and quarry incidents since 2000.
Forensic structural engineer Sean Brady will lead the review, to be completed by the end of the year, which will examine how the industry can improve safety.
The University of Queensland will also examine the sector's health and safety legislation to ensure it's up to date with mining practice and technology.
Just hours after the fatality at Baralaba North, a man, 57, was injured when he fell about 10 metres from a platform at Glencore's Collinsville Coal Mine.
He suffered suspected back and pelvic injuries and the Mines Inspectorate is investigating.
© AAP 2019