The rescue of 32 trapped miners may have done wonders for Chile’s international celebrity status and its President's approval ratings, but the Australian Government is not willing to test this political strategy.
In a telling statement about how long it can take to get state and federal agreement on uniform standards, the National Mine Safety Framework (NMSF), which has been in discussion since 2002, was unanimously passed by COAG in April 2009. The NMSF includes plans to implement uniform legislation and safety enforcement protocols and a collaborative approach to research, as well as a consistent data collection system.
In this context, the Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism (RET) this week released a Request for Tender (RFT) inviting submissions to build a National Mine Safety Database to record and analyse performance data against national mining safety standards.
“The National Mine Safety Database is intended to be both a repository for mine safety performance data and an incident reporting tool that can be accessed by mine sites for the purpose of reporting incident information to state/territory regulators,” says the AusTender post.
RET requires that tenderers be able to offer software and associated licences that can be configured to meet its requirements, as well as three year’s support and maintenance.
The successful tenderer will also be required to consolidate the existing jurisdictional systems and contained datasets into the new system. The development and implementation of the database is required to be completed by December 2011, so that the database can be operational by 1 January 2012.
The database forms part of a larger plan to introduce a consistent occupational health and safety regime across mines in all Australian jurisdictions.
The overall project has a budget of $6.4 million, made up of funding allocations from both the Commonwealth and the States and Territories.
According to Intermedium’srecords, the tender is the first approach to the ICT market that the Department has made since the 2007-08 financial year.