Prosecution will be considered in all instances where a significant breach of mine safety legislation is discovered by the NSW Department of Primary Industries. Significant breaches of legislation will include, but may not be limited to breaches which:

  • cause, or are likely to cause, death, or serious injury or ill health
  • continue to occur after other representations or interventions by NSW DPI
  • which interfere with the proper investigation of causes and circumstances surrounding an event.

Where there is a significant breach, and a prima facie case, together with a reasonable prospect of conviction, then the public interest expects that a prosecution will result.

NSW DPI intends to effectively use prosecution as an integral part of its overall Enforcement Strategy. NSW DPI provides, among other things, active encouragement for mines to meet community expectations in relation to the health and safety of people engaged in, or affected by, mining. It expects the mining industry to achieve significantly continuing improvement in safety and health performance and wants to make it clear that unacceptable levels of performance are not allowable.

Since the introduction of NSW DPI’s enforcement policy in 1999 there has been 33 successful prosecutions resulting in conviction.