2023 Goldfields Surface Mine Emergency Response Competition

 In Fire & Emergency

Emergency response and rescue are of paramount importance in the mining industry. To help ensure the safety of mining operations and keep rescue skills sharp, the Goldfields Mine Emergency Rescue Competition has taken place every year since 1903. 

The primary objective of Mine Emergency Response Competitions is to provide competing teams with the opportunity to test and refine their emergency response skills through simulated emergency scenarios. Additionally, participants can share their experiences and knowledge, fostering collaboration amongst mining professionals.

2023 Surface Mine Emergency Rescue Competition

The Goldfields Surface Mine Emergency Response Competition was hosted by Norton Goldfields – Paddington site in early May and comprised of the following scenarios that challenged the teams and enhanced their skills:

Hazardous Materials Management: Proper handling and containment of hazardous materials ensuring the safety of personnel and the environment during emergencies. 

Rope Rescue: Participants demonstrate their expertise in rope rescue techniques.

First Aid: Teams are assessed on their first aid skills, emphasising prompt and effective medical assistance.

Fire Fighting:  Teams showcase their swift and efficient firefighting capabilities in a simulated mine fire scenario.

Confined Space: Teams assessed on their skills and proficiencies when rescuing individuals trapped in confined spaces requiring specialised training and equipment.

Theory and skills: Competitors are evaluated based on their theoretical knowledge and teamwork.

Vehicle Extrication: Participants demonstrate their skilled techniques and tools proficiency in rescuing individuals trapped in vehicles.

Incident Management: Competitors exhibit their ability to manage and coordinate emergency situations efficiently. 

2023 SMERC Results:

The Mine Emergency Response Competitions culminate in recognising the outstanding performance of the participating teams. The stand-out teams from this year’s Surface Mine Emergency Response Competition were:


Best Team 1st Place – Norton Gold Fields – Paddington

Best Team 2nd Place – Northern Star Kalgoorlie Operations – KCGM

Best Team 3rd Place – Northern Star – Thunderbox

A special mention goes to Borun Hannan, from Northern Star – Thunderbox, for winning the Best New Captain category. SETS Enterprises were proud to sponsor this category highlighting the importance of leadership and training in the mining industry.

Kevin and Michael enjoyed the trip up to Kalgoorlie to spectate at this year’s surface competition and were pleased to see such a fantastic display of skills and teamwork. 

Community Support and Participation:

The Goldfields Mine Emergency Rescue Competitions have garnered significant support from the local community and industry stakeholders with over 40 local sponsors, and more than 100 industry volunteers. This year there were 7 teams competing in the SMERC. This collective effort highlights the shared commitment to mining safety and the recognition of the competition’s vital role in preparing teams for real-life emergency scenarios.

Promoting Safety and Preparedness:

Susan Cull, the CME State Manager, emphasises that safety is the top priority in mining and resources operations across Western Australia. 

“The Mine Emergency Response Competitions offer teams the opportunity to test their vital skills in a controlled environment that replicates worst-case scenarios on-site. By providing a platform for teams to showcase their capabilities and learn from one another, these competitions contribute significantly to mining safety and preparedness.”


Mines Safety and Training at SETS Enterprises:

SETS are proud to offer emergency rescue safety and training to prepare individuals for these scenarios. As well as offering a full list of courses including the Cert III in Emergency Response and Rescue, we can also provide trained personnel, emergency vehicles and equipment to keep your work site safe. 

Learn more about our how SETS can help your worksite stay safe through our full mobilisation projects here

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