Miners walk away from bus rollover after collision

Contractors from the Kestrel Mine Extension were involved in the collision and rollover last Friday.
Contractors from the Kestrel Mine Extension were involved in the collision and rollover last Friday. Contributed

A DOZEN mine workers had a lucky escape after their bus overturned near Emerald on Friday afternoon.

The bus carrying 12 contractors from the Kestrel Mine Extension (KME) was travelling north along Gordon Downs Access Rd about 1.30pm when it collided with a heavy vehicle at the intersection of Lilyvale Rd.

Police initially feared the worst but arrived to find all bus passengers had safely exited.

They were taken to Emerald Hospital for observation but later released.

The drivers of both vehicles were also uninjured.

"They are all very lucky the vehicle wasn't travelling at a higher speed," Emerald police officer-in-charge Senior Sergeant Peter McFarlane said.

A Rio Tinto Coal spokesman for Kestrel Mine said it was fortunate those involved were able to escape with relatively minor injuries.

"One contractor suffered a sprained ankle and minor back injury while two other contractors involved in the accident are seeking further medical advice," the spokesman said.

"Internal and police investigations are underway and majority of those involved will return to normal duties this week.

"Nothing is more important to Rio Tinto than the safety of our employees and we are thankful that no one was more seriously hurt."

The driver of the bus was issued an infringement by police for allegedly failing to give way.

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