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Investigating the Maturity of Incident Investigations of the Ghanaian Mining Industry and Its Effect on Safety Performance

1
Minerals Industry Safety and Health Centre, Sustainable Minerals Institute, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, QLD 4072, Australia
2
Environmental and Safety Engineering Department, University of Mines and Technology, P.O. Box 237, Tarkwa WT000, Ghana
3
The School of Chemical Engineering, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, QLD 4072, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 November 2018 / Revised: 4 January 2019 / Accepted: 7 January 2019 / Published: 10 January 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mine Safety)
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Abstract

Effective incident investigations have been recognised as a vital means of improving safety. Nevertheless, there has been little attempt to link incident investigations to actual safety performance. In this study, a framework for assessing the maturity of incident investigations and identifying areas for improvements is described. The framework was developed based on a literature review and interviews with 41 investigators across five large-scale Ghanaian gold mines. The framework consists of 20 elements across four dimensions and five maturity levels. The dimensions (investigator competencies, system of investigation, stages of investigation and post-investigation findings) consider the most relevant aspects of practical investigation and for each dimension, elements that are more specific were defined across five maturity levels. Mapping the interview data collected from five mines into a maturity framework highlighted that the mines occupied different positions on the framework. Some occupied the advanced levels consistently and others consistently occupied the lower levels. Applying the interview data to the framework also identified priority areas for improvement. Finally, the maturity scores derived from mapping interview data onto the framework were correlated with the incidence rates of the mines to determine if any relationship existed between the two variables. The low incidence rate mines had higher maturity scores and the high incidence rate mines had lower maturity scores. It was found that the method was effective in practice, giving clear indications of areas where improvements are needed. View Full-Text
Keywords: maturity framework; incident investigation; incidence rate; investigator competencies maturity framework; incident investigation; incidence rate; investigator competencies
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Stemn, E.; Bofinger, C.; Cliff, D.; Hassall, M.E. Investigating the Maturity of Incident Investigations of the Ghanaian Mining Industry and Its Effect on Safety Performance. Safety 2019, 5, 3.

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