CMPA Blast Management Plan Template in the Construction Material Industry

By on August 4, 2023

DR ELIZABETH GIBSON, General Manager of CMPA highlights the necessity for using the CMPA Blast Management Plan Template.

The overall objective of the Blast Management Plan (BMP) is to ensure there is no negative impact on the workplace, the environment or the surrounding community resulting from the blasting activity. Using this framework, the site will safely produce crushable raw feed that can be easily and safely dug with the calculated use of explosives; limiting fly
rock and environmental impacts to the site and its surrounds.
Just recently there have been issues with blasting notified to WorkSafe Victoria. On having conversations with Earth Resources and Silica, WorkSafe Victoria are fully supportive of the CMPA BMP Template. The only issues that WorkSafe have had to date is that the BMP Template has not been completed in its entirety by the Quarry Operator.

The Australian Standard AS 2187.2 – 2006 Explosives – Storage and use Part 2: Use of explosives stipulates the following obligations.

Both the Earth Resources Regulator and WorkSafe are responsible to ensure that Extractive Industry Operators will meet these obligations:

• The Earth Resources Regulator requires specific obligations to be managed when preparing a Blast Management Plan as part of the site’s Work Plan, therefore Work Authority
• WorkSafe require specific obligations to be managed and implemented so as to be satisfied that the Extractive Industry Operator is meeting their workplace health and safety regulatory duties.

There is some overlap of both these regulatory body’s requirements.

The table on the following page:
• Lists these obligations in the same order as the Australian Standard
• Highlights which regulator requires the operator to establish and or implement these obligations

CMPA has additional tools to support your operation, including; Shotfirers Book and Magazine Management Safety Checklist.

To order copies contact the Secretariat 03 5781 0655 or

ERR: Earth Resources Regulation DEECA

WS: WorkSafe

SITE PHOTO: Example of a Blast.

Below is a recent WorkSafe prosecution outcome related to blasting.
17 July 2023 Melbourne Magistrates’ Court – Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004 Section 25 (1)(b)

The offender is an employee of a company that owned a quarry (“the workplace”). The offender is a qualified shot firer, with over 20 years’ experience.

There is an ADF site in an adjoining property located to the southeast of the quarry, with a public road separating the two sites.

On 18 August 2020 a blast was scheduled to occur at the workplace and while all previous blasts would normally occur inwards at the workplace this was an unusual blast that was going to occur in the direction of the ADF site. This was due to the presence of asbestos pipes which meant that the blast had to be directed towards the ADF site.

The offender was the shot firer for the blast. At around 11.20am a witness on the ADF site recalled hearing three sirens sounding from the quarry. The sirens sounded for around 30 seconds to 1 minute, and indicated a blast was to occur. After the last siren the witness heard a loud explosion followed by a dust cloud emanating from the quarry and coming over the ADF site. A couple of seconds later, fly rock started raining down around persons on the ADF site, however no one was struck by any of the flyrock.

The offender failed to take reasonable care when he failed to:
• Ensure the blast management plan for the blast contained an exclusion zone on a map and that the map was attached to the blast management plan; and
• Nominate the position for a video of the blast to be taken; or
• Not fire a shot until an exclusion zone of at least 500 metres was identified and established and it was established that the exclusion zone was clear of any unauthorised persons.

In sentencing the offender, the Court noted that this was not a deliberate act but was a miscalculation of the distance required for the exclusion zone.

The court also found that the consequence if any of the flyrock hit a person would be possibly fatal or serious injuries. While this was the first time that this sort of incident occurred, there was a requirement for a 500m exclusion zone to be in place and more care should have been taken given the potential for disastrous consequences.
• The Court accepted in mitigation:
• That there was a plea of guilty.
• The offender is of good character and has expressed remorse.
• That the offender has been employed by the same employer for close to 34 years.
• Processes and procedures had been updated post incident to prevent this sort of incident occurring in the future.
• The ongoing effect of the incident on the offender is referenced in a number of references and a psychological report.

The offender pleaded guilty and was without conviction sentenced to pay a fine of $4,000 and to pay costs of $5,346.

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