In the municipality of Paragominas, in the northeast of Pará, Hydro found in technology an alternative to make the operation of tractors in the bauxite mine safer and more ergonomic, with the adoption of a system that allows to control the equipment remotely. On August 8, the D11 crawler tractor system won gold in the “Occupational Hygiene” category of the Brazil Protection Award 2019, during the 2nd Brazilian Congress on Health and Safety at Work, in São Paulo. In the “OSH Preventive and Corrective Actions” category, the case was defended on the Guide for Accident Prevention in Earthmoving Operations, which won bronze.
The awards reinforce Hydro's commitment to operational safety and health of employees, highlighting the company in the mineral sector. This year, 194 registered cases were evaluated and the judges chose the 32 best cases in the different categories.
The D11 Crawler Tractor Remote Operation system eliminates occupational health risks associated with the operation of mobile equipment by preventing the employee from being exposed to high vibrations generated by the tractor, during ore dismantling. “With the system, the operation of the equipment started to be made from an external control. This provided an ergonomic improvement for employees, based on a technological alternative to totally reduce the operator's exposure to conditions of excessive vibration ”, explains Thiago Nascimento, safety and occupational hygiene technician at Mineração Paragominas. According to him, the project can be considered a pioneer, as there were no similar references in Brazil.
Prevention Guide - The best prevention practices in major earthworks for the implantation of tailings dams were brought together in an innovative manual, which became a reference for the development of internal activities and employee training. Called the Guide for Accident Prevention in Earthmoving Operations, the document was prepared for three and a half years and counted on the active participation of the leaders, managers and machine operators of Mineração Paragominas.
For the construction of the guide, multidisciplinary groups were created to carry out field inspections, workshops, seminars, review of operational procedures, lessons learned about accidents in similar companies, identification of good practices and incorporation of new technologies.
“With the guide, we reduce the exposure of people to risk and further improve operations management. Employees began to receive guidance more focused on the tasks discussed, daily, in the Safety and Health Dialogues (DSS) and training sessions for new hires. The document was also printed, in the form of a pocket guide, so that they have on hand for consultations at stops and service intervals ”, explained Ricardo Sarmento, HSE supervisor of Projects at Mineração Paragominas. He points out that the use of the guide has also become a prerequisite when hiring new services.