Premier Campbell Newman says FIFO is appropriate in remote mines but may not be necessary in projects close to regional cities.
Premier Campbell Newman says FIFO is appropriate in remote mines but may not be necessary in projects close to regional cities.

FIFO no longer guaranteed, particularly in regional towns

THE fly-in, fly-out staffing of Queensland mines that helped develop the coal mining boom is no longer guaranteed, according to Premier Campbell Newman.

In a visit to Mount Isa, Mr Newman said FIFO was appropriate in remote mines but may not be necessary in projects close to cities.

"This government believes in regional cities and towns like Mount Isa and we want to see regional Queensland built up," he told News Ltd.

The government has the ability to restrict FIFO through its conditions and approvals to mines.

Central Queensland communities have voiced their concerns about the huge impact the rostering system has on small towns where infrastructure and services are limited.

A Federal Government report on FIFO is due to be tabled in Parliament in March, after a committee headed by independent Tony Windsor spent 12 months taking submissions from across Australia.

The results of the committee's work, including comments from doctors, nurses, mining companies, environmentalists and a gamut of others, will be tabled during the first round of parliamentary sittings for the year.

In the process of digging into the truths behind FIFO, medical experts told the committee that these workers were more likely to have sexually-transmitted diseases and depression.

After hinting he would consider new laws and regulation, Mr Windsor faced the ire of mining lobby groups which worried that less flexible options could mean more struggles when finding workers.


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