This procedure must be held for any mining fatality. Legal Representation is advised as unions will undoubtely have their own lawyers.
MHS Act Section 65. Initiating inquiries.
(1) Unless the provisions of section 63 have been invoked, the Chief Inspector of Mines must direct an inspector to conduct an inquiry into any accident or occurrence at a mine that results in the death of any person.
(2) Unless the provisions of section 63 have been invoked, the Chief Inspector of Mines may direct an inspector to conduct an inquiry into -
(a) any accident or occurrence at a mine that results in the serious injury or serious illness of any person;
(b) any occurrence, practice or condition concerning health or safety of persons at one or more mines; or
(c) any actual or suspected contravention of, or failure to comply with, any provision of this Act.
(3) If there is cause for concern on health or safety grounds and if the provisions of section 63 have not been invoked, the Chief Inspector of Mines may direct an inspector to conduct an inquiry into any matter referred to in subsection (2) if requested in writing to do so by -
(a) a registered trade union with members at the mine or mines;
(b) a health and safety representative or health and safety committee at the mine; or
(c) if there is no health and safety representative at the mine, an employee.
(4) This section does not limit any other law regulating the holding of an inquest or other inquiry into the death of a person.
Section 68. Inquiry to be public.
(1) An inquiry must be held in public.
(2) Despite subsection (1) the person presiding at an inquiry may of that person's own accord or at the request of a witness exclude members of the public or specific persons or categories of persons from attending the proceedings or part of the proceedings when the proper conduct of the inquiry requires.
(3) The person presiding at an inquiry may make any order necessary to ensure that employees at the mine and members of the public have access to the premises in which the inquiry is held.
Section 69. Right to participate in inquiry.
The persons listed in this section may participate in an inquiry and, either personally or through a representative, may put questions to witnesses and inspect any book, plan, record or other document or item presented at the inquiry. The persons entitled to participate are -
(a) any person who has a material interest in the inquiry;
(b) a representative of any registered trade union with members at the mine in respect of which the inquiry is being held; and
(c) any health and safety representative responsible for the working place in respect of which the inquiry is being held.
Section 70. Powers of person presiding at inquiry.
The person presiding at an inquiry may -
(a) instruct or summon any person to appear at any specified time and place;
(b) question any person under oath or affirmation;
(c) instruct any person -
(i) to produce any book, plan, record or other document or item necessary for the purposes of the inquiry; or
(ii) to perform any other act in relation to this Act necessary for the purpose of the inquiry.
Section 71. Duty of persons summoned or instructed.
(1) Subject to subsection (2), every person giving evidence at an inquiry must answer any relevant question.
(2) The law regarding a witness's privilege in a court of law applies equally to any person being questioned at an inquiry.
(3) The person presiding at an inquiry may direct that any evidence given by a person during an inquiry may not be used for the purposes of sections 55A to 55D, or any appeal relating to those sections, or in any criminal or disciplinary proceedings against that person except in criminal proceedings on a charge of perjury against that person.
(4) When a directive has been issued under subsection (3), the person involved is not entitled to refuse to answer any relevant question only on the grounds that the answer could expose that person to a criminal charge, disciplinary proceedings or a recommendation under section 55A.
(5) A person instructed in terms of section 70(c) must comply with that instruction unless the person has sufficient cause for not doing so.
Section 72. Inquiry records and reports.
(1) A person presiding at an inquiry must -
(a) record the evidence given at the inquiry, including any evidence given with the assistance of an interpreter;
(b) at the conclusion of the inquiry, prepare a written report of the findings, recommendations and any remedial steps;
(c) submit a copy of the report and the record of the inquiry to the Chief Inspector of Mines,
(d) supply a copy of the report and the record of the inquiry to the employer and to any health and safety representative, health and safety committee or registered trade union that requested the inquiry; and
(e) on request, supply a copy of the report and the record of the inquiry to any person who has a material interest in the inquiry.
(2) An inspector may instruct the employer of the mine concerned to prominently and conspicuously display a copy of the report or any portion of it for employees to read.
(3) The Chief Inspector of Mines may submit a copy of the report to the appropriate Attorney-General.