Article by Cole Latimer
Xstrata Coal has turned its former Baal Bone underground mine into a hands-on training facility.
The Lithgow mine has now become the regional training centre, where cleanskins will spend 12 weeks learning mining skills.
According to Xstrata "what's different from more traditional courses is that the trainees not only attend classroom tutorials, they complete familiarisation and operations with the equipment on the surface and then proceed underground to operate the equipment in a 'real-world' environment before they start their fulltime careers".
Mark Bulkeley, Xstrata Coal's Baal Bone health safety and training manager, said the first group of 12 trainees graduated a few weeks ago and are already working at the Ulan West mine.
"The feedback we've received from them is that the Baal Bone training facility enabled them to have a better understanding and knowledge before going into production," Bulkeley said.
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