Glencore says it has introduced additional health screening of its workforce across all its copper and zinc sites in north-west Queensland amid criticism of FIFO miners continuing to arrive in the COVID-19 epidemic.
Glencore said that every day at every site all employees and contractors must pass a health screen, including a temperature check and answer questions on their health, recent travel history, and any contact with a confirmed COVID-19 case.
Glencore said the non-contact temperature testing will be conducted safely, by authorised personnel, in line with social distancing requirements.
The company said all FIFO workers to Ernest Henry Mine are undergoing the same check prior to boarding their charter flights in Townsville, Brisbane and Cairns while discussions were continuing with the state and federal governments on screening of commercial flights to Mount Isa.
"Glencore has enacted a range of measures across its operations, including social distancing systems and protocols, regular communications with our workforce on the importance of good hygiene and health, increased cleaning and sanitisation of workplaces, and the development and implementation of a Communicable Diseases Plan," the company said in a statement.
"We have restricted all non-essential and business travel and strongly recommended our people postpone or cancel non-essential personal travel. We have also developed self-quarantine and isolation procedures in the event of a suspected or positive case at any site."
Glencore said the federal government had identified mining as an essential service.
"By continuing to operate safely and responsibly, we will help sustain the economy at a critical time while making a vital contribution to our regional communities," the company said.
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