An operator has died after being trapped inside a digger at Middlemount Mine.
An operator has died after being trapped inside a digger at Middlemount Mine. Alistair Brightman

Miner confirmed dead after wall collapse

A MINE worker, who was trapped inside a digger after a mine wall collapsed at Middlemount Coal Mine yesterday afternoon, has died.

The digger was working on a shelf of a wall at the coal mine, about 90km from Emerald, when the wall collapsed, trapping the operator inside.

A Queensland Ambulance Service statement said paramedics were called to the mine on Dysart Middlemount Rd at 12.39pm yesterday after reports of a mining wall collapse onto a machine, which entrapped the operator.

On arrival at the scene, paramedics and Queensland Fire and Emergency Services were unable to access the patient as the area was deemed "unstable and unsafe”.

Queensland Ambulance Service said it took emergency services "a significant amount of time” to secure the area for paramedics to be able to assess the mine worker for critical injuries.

A statement issued by Middlemount Coal CEO Gerrie Jordaan at 10.53pm yesterday confirmed the miner had died.

"It is with great sadness that Middlemount Coal regrets to advise of the loss of one of its valuable team members in a mine site incident this afternoon (Wednesday),” the statement said.

"The details of the incident are now the subject of a full investigation to which Middlemount Coal will offer its full co-operation.

"We are working closely with emergency services and relevant authorities on this incident.”

The statement from Mr Jordaan said the "welfare of the family of the deceased and the safety of our people are our highest priorities”.

"We extend our deepest sympathies to family and friends at this time and we have offered the company's full support to them to deal with their devastating loss,” he said.

"We are deeply saddened by this news and will provide more information as it is available.”

Operations at Middlemount Mine have been suspended until further notice.