CORONAVIRUS — FLY
IN, FLY OUT WORKERS
330. Hon ALISON XAMON to the minister representing the
Minister for Mines and Petroleum:
My question is on behalf of Hon
Robin Chapple, who is away on urgent parliamentary business. I refer to fly in,
fly out operations still in effect around Western Australia.
(1) In light of
the COVID-19 pandemic, does the minister intend to put restrictions around fly
in, fly out and drive in, drive out workers, considering their ability to
practise social distancing at work, and in transit to and from work, is
(2) If yes to (1), what
(3) Is the extractive mining sector
considered an essential service by the government?
(4) Is the
exploration sector of the mining industry considered an essential service by
(5) Does the minister believe that the risk and
potential scale of transmission of COVID-19 can be definitively
mitigated if the FIFO arrangements are to continue?
On behalf of the Minister for
Regional Development, I thank the member for some notice of the question. I wish
the member well while he is away from the house on urgent parliamentary
business. The following information has been provided to me by the Minister for
Mines and Petroleum.
(1) The Western Australian social distancing
restrictions that are in place for the community are applicable for fly
in, fly out and drive in, drive out workers and are enforceable by the Western Australia
(2) Sites are required
to implement the isolation and distancing procedures mandated by the lead
agencies—the Western Australian Department of Health and the Australian
Department of Health.
McGowan government recognises the important part that mining and exploration
plays in Australia and, in particular, Western Australia's economy,
which can form a basis for the recovery from the impacts of the COVID-19
(5) Yes. Based on
the current public health advice and if sites are meeting their legislative
requirements in relation to COVID-19, as outlined by the lead agencies.