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Safeguard OSH Solutions - Thomson Reuters

Safeguard OSH Solutions - Thomson Reuters



OSH Tracker

Bellet v X (DC, 30/11/07)

OSH Tracker

Defendant:
Gary David Haddow
Important information that could have prevented the death of a West Coast coal miner was never passed on to the owner or manager of the mine, a District Court judge has determined. 
Hearing charges against the manager of Black Reef Mine, Gary David Haddow, and a consultant geologist who has interim name suppression, Judge James Weir said both the geologist and the mine’s former owner knew the adjacent Baddeley’s Mine was flooded but did not pass this information on to Black Reef. 
Judge Weir convicted both defendants in relation to the death of the worker, who was swept away by an inrush of water when the rock wall separating the Baddeley’s and Black Reef Mines was ruptured in March 2006. 
The mine owner, Black Reef Mine Ltd, pleaded guilty to two charges. It was fined $10,000 on a s6 charge relating to the dead worker, and convicted and discharged on a s18(1)(a) charge relating to Haddow, who was working with him. It was ordered to pay $20,000 in reparations to the family of the deceased. 
Haddow was convicted and discharged on two s19 charges, for endangering himself and another person who managed the mine during his absence, fined $2000 on a third s18 charge relating to the dead man, and ordered to pay $10,000 in reparation. 
The geologist, C, was fined $10,000 under s19 and ordered to pay reparations of $20,000 ( Greymouth DC, January 29). 
Black Reef bought the mine in January 2005, contracting Haddow to manage it and employing the deceased to work with him. Company director Shane Bocock had no mining experience and relied on others to advise him about safety. 
The company began work near the disused Baddeley workings, knowing they were on the same seam as Black Reef, but believing that a fault line provided a safe barrier. 
Both C and the former mine owner knew work was being done in this area but did not warn Black Reef that the old mine was flooded. C also failed to tell the company that the fault was not a suitable barrier, and that work should stop until the mine was surveyed. 
The judge expressed sympathy for Haddow, who narrowly escaped death in the flood, but said that by deciding to work on without a survey, not to either drill ahead, and not to warn his stand-in manager about the nearby workings, he had failed to take practicable steps that were available to him. 
Appeals by both C, against his conviction, and the Department of Labour, against the fines imposed on all three defendants, are to be heard by a full bench of the High Court on July 28. 
Industry:
Mining
Sub-Industry:
Coal Mining
Risk:
Engulfment/drowning
Harm:
Death
Penalty Amount:
$12000.00
Reparation Amount:
$10000.00
Appeared in Safeguard issue 109

Judgment Text

RESERVED JUDGMENT OF JUDGE JJ WEIR 
Judge JJ Weir
[1]
The West Coast of the South Island is an area rich in the history of mining for both gold and coal. In the Greymouth area alone, more than 130 mines have operated since coal was first discovered there by Thomas Brunner in 1848. Most now are abandoned. Dunollie is but one of the coal mining areas in Greymouth and over the years has become honeycombed with mines and old mine workings. There are still mines working in the area including up until the 8th of March 2006, Black Water Mine, formerly known as Tillers Mine. 
[2]
Such an extensive mining history also brings its share of tragedies when men's lives are lost mining for coal. Brunner, Strongman and Stockton are but a few names which, to a greater or lesser extent, are associated with such tragedies. To this list must now be added the Black Water Mine for on the 8th of March 2006, Robert James McGowan was killed by an inrush of water and rock when the abandoned flooded Baddeley Mine was mistakenly tunnelled into. 
[3]
As a result of the inrush, a number of charges were laid against the parties involved in the incident. Black Reef Mine Ltd pleaded guilty to two charges alleging that it failed to take all practicable steps to ensure that its two employees, Robert James McGowan and Gary David Haddow, were not harmed while doing work for the company. 
[4]
… faces one charge of failing to take all practicable steps to ensure that no action or inaction of his while at work caused harm to persons working at the Tiller Mine, in that he failed to take all practicable steps to ensure that they were not exposed to the hazard of an inrush of water. He has pleaded not guilty to that charge. 
[5]
Gary David Haddow faces similar charges in respect of Robert James McGowan and Lance Edward McKenzie, and a further charge that being an employee, he failed to take all practicable steps to ensure his own safety while at work, namely he failed to take all practicable steps to ensure that he was not exposed to the hazard of an inrush of water. He has pleaded not guilty to those charges. 
Background to the Incident 
[6]
In January 2005, Tiller Mine, which is located at Dunollie, Greymouth, was purchased by Black Reef Mine Ltd. Shane Bocock is a director of that company. 
[7]
Prior to the purchase of the mine, the company commissioned a due diligence report from Option One Ltd, a mining consultancy. At paragraph 2.2.5, the feasibility study dealt with mine staffing and stated as follows: 
“The mine staffing at present comprises the two owners who are at the end of their working lives. Obtaining a workforce is the most critical and uncertain issue. There is currently a shortage of skilled and experienced miners on the West Coast. … The key person will be the manager. This person will need extensive experience and be able to play a key role in mine planning as well as operational management. 
Safety 
During the mine visit, it became apparent the mine has no developed health and safety system. 
The mine is not audited by OSH apparently due to it being ‘an owner/operator mine, and workload constraints of the inspectors … ’ 
Specific Hazards 
The mine is regarded as a ‘non gassy’ mine meaning it is not subject to methane being present. … The mine has a low propensity towards spontaneous combustion. 
The mine is not subject to methane/coal outbursts. 
Summary 
Coal quality is very good. The geological structure seems well defined and is suitable for hydro-mining. 
A feasible mine plan is available (albeit lacking in detail at this stage). 
The mine has no workforce and it needs to get one. It must do so in an environment of competition for skills from other larger operators. There are no H & S systems. ”
[8]
On the 7th of September 2005, Black Reef contracted with Haddow Bell Ltd for the provision of mine management services at Tiller Mine. The director and sole employee of the company was Mr Haddow who started work as mine manager at the Tiller Mine on the 22nd of August 2005 prior to execution of the contract. At the time of his employment, Mr Haddow held an appropriate qualification, namely a certificate of compliance as a coal mine deputy issued on the 15th of January 2003. 
[9]
On the 5th of September 2005, Mr McGowan commenced employment with Black Reef as a miner at the Tiller Mine. 
[10]
Underground mining consists of two fundamental activities — development and extraction. Development is the process of tunnelling into the coal seam to its boundaries and forming a network of tunnels (usually called “drives”) and facilities. Extraction is the process of removing all the coal which can be then accessed from the development workings. 
[11]
At Tiller Mine, development work was done using drilling and blasting. An air powered rotary drill would be used to drill holes in the face of the drive in which a number of shots (single explosive charges) would be placed. These shots would shatter the face of the drive and water would then be used to wash the coal back to an area where it was collected. Roof support was then carried out using timber. To assist with washing the coal back to the collection area, drives were to be advanced on a slight rising grade. The proposed method for extraction was also based on drill and blast with transport of the coal being carried away from the face using flumes. This is called hydro-mining and is practised in very few places in the world outside of the West Coast of New Zealand. 
[12]
Prior to Black Reef's purchase of the Tiller Mine, the previous owners (Mr Ken Tiller and Mr JA Menzies) had filed annual work programmes with the Ministry of Economic Development. The last work programme submitted indicated that work had begun on entry into the “syncline” block and that the mine was developing to the south (Area A). 
[13]
By the 2nd of October 2005, those southern drives in Area A had encountered a problem. The problem was that the drives had struck a fault and could not proceed further. Mr Caffyn, a geologist who had provided services to the mine since approximately 1987, was asked to visit the mine which he did on the 5th of October. He confirmed that the southern drives had struck a fault. 
[14]
At that time, Mr Caffyn had effectively retired and he therefore approached … of … to see if he was interested in advising Black Reef Mining. … met with Mr Caffyn sometime in October 2005, at which time Mr Caffyn handed … a folder containing many historical mine plans relevant to Tiller Mine and other workings in the area. 
[15]
As a result of the difficulties that had been encountered with the southern drives, Mr Bocock met with Mr Ken Tiller, one of the former owners of the mine, at the mine on the 7th of October 2005. At this time, Mr Bocock raised with Mr Tiller the possibility of extracting coal to the west. This involved moving towards a geological feature known variously as the “Hade Vertical” or “Baddeley Fault”, otherwise known as Area B. Mr Tiller produced an A4 sized plan of the mine on which a number of points were written in red. The first point stated, “check categorically no connection between Tiller No. 1 and Baddeleys — Geologist's report”
[16]
Baddeleys is a reference to the Baddeley Mine which was abandoned in approximately 1939. The Baddeley Mine workings are situated to the west of the Tiller Mine on the other side of the Baddeley Fault. Both mines worked the same seam of coal, although it was understood by Mr Haddow and Mr Bocock that they were separated by the “throw” of the Baddeley Fault. The throw of a fault refers to the displacement of the coal-seam which occurs when it is disrupted by a fault — effectively the distance between a seam of coal that has been moved up or down by a fault. 
[17]
Subsequently, the decision was made by Black Reef to mine into Area B. It was planned to create three rises up toward the Baddeley Fault and then create two or three parallel drives, or sublevels, running in a north-south direction that would link the three rises, creating escape routes and ventilation circuits and to allow for the coal to be extracted back towards the extraction area. 
[18]
Mr Haddow, on the 10th of October 2005, commenced work on the southern most rise up into Area B, the No. 3 rise. 
[19]
On the 19th of October, … visited the Tiller Mine to undertake a familiarisation visit for which he did not charge Black Reef. During this visit, he mapped the development work carried out since Mr Caffyn's last visit using tape measurements supplied by Mr Haddow. At the time of his visit, the No. 3 rise had been formed and … confirmed to Mr Haddow that the top of the No. 3 rise was approaching a fault. 
[20]
Mr Haddow commenced work on the northern most rise, the No. 1 rise, on the 31st of October 2005. 
[21]
On the 26th of November 2005, … was invited to the mine by Mr Haddow to inspect some stone that had appeared at the top of the No. 1 rise. Mr Haddow thought that he had hit the Baddeley Fault and was seeking … advice on how to proceed. What took place in that conversation has been the subject of some dispute which will be referred to later in this judgment, but it is agreed that … made the observation to Mr Haddow that there was some indication that the fault lay ahead. 
[22]
It is common ground that they did discuss the necessity of retaining a surveyor to accurately assess the location of the Baddeley Mine. It is also common ground that Mr Haddow had, by that time, made a number of unsuccessful attempts to engage the services of a surveyor. 
[23]
On the 1st of December 2005, while developing the No. 1 rise, Mr Haddow broke into old mine workings. These workings were not marked on any plans held by Black Reef. It subsequently transpired that these were part of the Tiller Mine. Mr Haddow decided it would not be safe to continue to mine these and therefore pulled back and commenced setting up for the No. 2 rise. 
[24]
On the 6th of December 2005, … emailed to Mr Haddow an updated plan of the Tiller Mine. This had the No. 1 and No. 3 rises marked on it, based on incline angles that he had measured and tape measures taken by Mr Haddow. That plan also showed elevations. The base and top of the No. 1 and No. 3 rises were marked with elevations along with a plus/minus sign. This plan was subsequently used by Mr Haddow and Mr Bocock as the basis on which critical mining decisions were made. 
[25]
Following … visit, work at the Tiller Mine progressed with the creation of the No. 2 rise, commenced on approximately the 4th of December, and the construction of the top sublevel drive, commenced on approximately the 14th of January 2006. The No. 2 rise continued upwards until it hit stone. Mr Haddow thought that the stone was the throw of the Baddeley Fault. He pulled back 10 metres and continued to construct the top sublevel drive on what he thought was a parallel part of the fault. The top sublevel drive from the No. 1 rise was connected with the No. 2 rise on the 30th of January 2006. 
[26]
On the 20th of February 2006, Lance McKenzie was employed by Black Reef to continue the development of the top sublevel drive while Mr Haddow was on holiday. Mr Haddow's instructions to him were to continue the top sublevel drive to connect numbers one, two and three rises. When he had done that, he was to create another drive 10 or 20 metres down the No. 1 rise parallel to the top sublevel drive. 
[27]
Mr McKenzie duly continued work on the top sublevel drive until he finished at the Tiller Mine on the 1st of March 2006, by which time he had not made connection between the top sublevel drive and the No. 3 rise. 
[28]
Mr Haddow, when he returned from holiday on the 1st of March 2006, continued driving the top sublevel drive towards the south with the intention of intersecting the top of the No. 3 rise. He did so with the assistance of Mr McGowan. 
[29]
On the 8th of March 2006, at approximately midday, Mr Haddow and Mr McGowan were working at the face of the top sublevel drive. They had drilled and primed the face for blasting and then retreated to the No. 2 rise. Both men were sheltering in the No. 2 rise just below the top sublevel drive when Mr Haddow fired the shot. That was immediately followed by a massive inrush of water and rock which engulfed both Mr Haddow and Mr McGowan. 
[30]
Mr McGowan was swept down the No. 2 rise, suffering immediate fatal injuries. Mr Haddow was able to jump towards a peg on the wall of the No. 2 rise and held on for about 40 minutes in total before the water abated sufficiently for him to descend and locate the body of Mr McGowan. 
The Law 
[31]
The Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992 came into force on the 1st of April 1993 and reformed the law relating to the health and safety of employees and other people at work or affected by the work of other people. In relation to the proper approach to the Act, the Court of Appeal in Central Cranes Ltd v Department of Labour [1997] ERNZ 520 said at p527: 
“It is clear that the Act adopts a preventive approach to maintaining and promoting health and safety in the workplace. Its principal object is to provide for the prevention of harm. To achieve this object employers are required to promote safety in the workplace and both employers and others associated with the workplace are subject to the duty to take all practicable steps to ensure such safety or ensure that employees and others in the workplace are not harmed. … The Act does not then adopt a prescriptive approach to the duties of those made responsible for safety in the workplace. 
It provides a comprehensive set of general principles but leaves the detail of acceptable practices to be worked out and implemented by regulations and codes of practice within the various industries. ”
[32]
In Department of Labour v De Spa & Co Ltd [1994] 1 ERNZ 339, 341-342, the High Court stated: 
“It is obvious from this legislative scheme that Parliament has deliberately placed on employers a positive duty to seek out hazards in order to determine whether they are significant and if they are, to eliminate them, isolate them, or minimise them, as the case may be. What is important is that the Act casts on employers these positive duties. ”
[33]
In Tranz Rail Ltd v Department of Labour [1997] ERNZ 316 at 320, Ellis J said: 
“The obligations on an employer are uncompromising and onerous. An employer must be proactive and anticipate harm and take all practical steps to minimise it. ”
[34]
In respect of a prosecution under s 19, it is not necessary to show that the failure caused actual harm. (See Department of Labour v Andy Kay per Cartwright J, High Court Auckland, 8/12/97). 
[35]
At any one time, more than one person can have a duty under the Act. See s 2(2)(c): 
“(c)
A duty imposed by this Act on any person is not diminished or affected by the fact that it is also imposed on 1 or more other persons, whether in the same capacity or in different capacities. ”
See also Central Cranes Ltd v Department of Labour, Thomas J, [1997] ERNZ 520 (CA) at 527, line 39. 
All Practicable Steps 
[36]
All practicable steps is defined in s 2A of the Act as: 
“(1)
… in relation to achieving any result in any circumstances, means all steps to achieve the result that it is reasonably practicable to take in the circumstances, having regard to— 
(a)
the nature and severity of the harm that may be suffered if the result is not achieved; and 
(b)
the current state of knowledge about the likelihood that harm of that nature and severity will be suffered if the result is not achieved; and 
(c)
the current state of knowledge about harm of that nature; and 
(d)
the current state of knowledge about the means available to achieve the result, and about the likely efficacy of each of those means; and 
(e)
the availability and cost of each of those means. 
(2)
To avoid doubt, a person required by this Act to take all practicable steps is required to take those steps only in respect of circumstances that the person knows or ought reasonably to know about. ”
[37]
What does “practicable” mean? In Department of Labour v Solid Timber Building Systems Ltd, Baragwanath J quoted a House of Lords decision, Marshall v Gotham Cave Ltd [1954] All ER 937, Lord Reid at 942: 
“I think it enough to say that, if a precaution is practicable, it must be taken unless, in the whole circumstances, that would be unreasonable. And as men's lives may be at stake it should not lightly be held that to take a practicable precaution is unreasonable. ”
[38]
He went on to find at paragraph [35]: 
“I construe the definition of ‘all practicable steps’ as essentially one of objective fact, viewing the matter at a stage shortly before the injury through the eye of an employer conducting the respondent's operation and with the knowledge that such employer could reasonably have been expected to possess as to the nature of prospective harm from the machine. ”
[39]
In Buchanans Foundry v Department of Labour [1996] 3 NZLR 112 HC at 119, Hanson J held: 
“The requirement to take all reasonably practicable steps is not a counsel of hindsight perfection. It involves, as noted earlier, considerations of ‘due diligence’, ‘a total absence of fault’, of doing what a ‘reasonable man’ would have done under the circumstances, or acting with ‘all reasonable care’. ”
[40]
In that decision, Hanson J went on to hold that complete protection against all potential hazards was not required by the Act. 
The Case Against ... 
[41]
At the conclusion of the prosecution case, counsel for … made a submission that there was no prima facie case to answer on the following grounds: 
a)
The evidence adduced in terms of the defendant being an employee was so weak that no great reliance could be placed upon it; and 
b)
The evidence adduced to prove the omission to take all practicable steps was so weak that no great reliance could be placed upon it. 
[42]
The test to be applied on a submission of no case is as stated by the Court of Appeal in R v Flyger [2001] 2 NZLR 721. The test is that a Judge should not make an order to discharge where there is Crown evidence that, if accepted, would be sufficient to prove the case. 
[43]
In this respect, the informant relied on an admission made by … in a statement of the 12th of July 2007 that he was an employee of his company which was freely offered by him in the presence of his legal advisor. On that basis, I ruled against counsel on point one of his submission. 
[44]
Insofar as point two is concerned, I ruled that there had been a significant amount of evidence as to the practicability of the steps to be taken by … , in particular the evidence of Mr Caffyn and Mr Field, both experienced geologists. 
[45]
At the conclusion of my ruling, … counsel advised that he had instructions that his client did not wish to give or call evidence in respect of the information before him, and both counsel and … accordingly withdrew. 
[46]
For the sake of completeness, I explain my reasoning in respect of both of those points: 
“1.
Was ... an employee of Western Exploration? 
a)
A company search confirms that … is a limited liability company and that … is the sole director and shareholder of that company. 
b)
… admitted that he was an employee of … in a statement made in the presence of his legal advisor when he was under no compulsion to do so. The informant was entitled to rely on the submission in bringing the charge against him as an employee. I accept the submission made by counsel on behalf of the informant that frequently in health and safety prosecutions, particularly in cases involving smaller employers, there are few or no paper records to establish the employment status of relevant individuals. In such circumstances, admissions from employers and others are in duties under the HSE Act are often of critical importance. 
c)
Evidence was adduced that … invoiced Black Reef Mining Ltd for the geological services provided by … . 
d)
The invoice was in fact paid by Black Reef Mining Ltd. 
e)
… elected not to give evidence or call evidence and my finding now is that the prosecution has discharged its onus in this respect. If … wished to resile from his admission, then it was open to him to offer evidence as to why he made the admission and any other evidence in relation to his employment status at the time. 
2.
Practicable Steps 
In respect of the second submission that the evidence with regard to … failing to take all practicable steps was so weak that no great reliance could be placed upon it, that clearly could never have been the case based on the evidence of the two geologists, amongst others. ”
Practicable steps available to ... 
[47]
The informant alleges that the following practicable steps were available to …  
a)
To have advised Black Reef and/or Mr Haddow to cease mining inside the two chain barrier; 
b)
To have advised Black Reef and/or Mr Haddow to cease work until current instrument survey information had been obtained; 
c)
To have advised Black Reef and/or Mr Haddow of the unsuitability of using the throw of the Baddeley Fault as a barrier between the Tiller Mine and Baddeley Mine workings; 
d)
To have advised Black Reef and/or Mr Haddow that the Baddeley Mine workings were flooded; 
e)
To have advised Black Reef and/or Mr Haddow of the requirement to drill ahead when approaching old workings; 
f)
To have advised Black Reef and/or Mr Haddow that the plan which he provided on 6 December 2005 might be inaccurate. 
Discussion 
To Have Advised Black Reef and/or Mr Haddow to Cease Mining Inside the Two Chain Barrier 
[48]
On the 26th of November, Mr Haddow met with … to discuss a number of issues. One of these was to develop Area B which would involve mining inside a two chain barrier of coal leading up to the Baddeley workings. 
[49]
A number of witnesses gave uncontested evidence that old workings are a well known hazard in underground mining due to the likelihood that they may either contain water or an accumulation of gases. In many cases, particularly in the West Coast, once a mine is abandoned, steps are taken to flood it to avoid the issue of an accumulation of gases and spontaneous combustion. 
[50]
Mr Caffyn, the previous geologist at the mine, said that when he briefed … in October, he was pretty certain that they discussed the Baddeley Mine being where it was and the common knowledge that it was flooded. He further confirmed that where a mine was being developed in an area where there were old workings, it is common practice to leave a barrier of coal. This was confirmed by … admission in a statement on 28 March 2006 which he gave to David Bellett, the Health and Safety Inspector. He said that he believed “a solid two chain barrier was the best method and that has been the traditional method for the West Coast.” 
[51]
Mr Caffyn said that the purpose of such a barrier is to protect the miners and the resource. Mr Caffyn also said, in cross-examination, that had a strong statement been made to the effect that there was going to be development and extraction within this two chain barrier, that he would have advised that he did not think that it was a very wise move. 
[52]
Mr Field, a consulting geologist, in his evidence, stated that “geologists with mining experience would be expected to be aware of the significance and importance of such barriers.” 
[53]
In my view, the purpose of a two chain barrier to old workings and the need for it to be maintained ought to have been well known to … , an experienced geologist. Furthermore, he accepted that such was the case. It would have been a simple matter to have advised Mr Haddow and/or Black Reef of that position by a telephone conversation or indeed in his conversation with Mr Haddow. 
To Have Advised Black Reef and/or Mr Haddow to Cease Work Until Current Survey Information Had Been Obtained 
[54]
It is clear that … was aware of the lack of recent surveying and that Black Reef had been having difficulties getting a surveyor to the mine. Mr Haddow had advised … that this was the case, and furthermore … confirmed this in a further statement to David Bellett statement on the 12th of July. It is also confirmed at paragraphs 5 and 9 of a letter dated the 10th of March 2006, which he wrote to Bill Taylor, the Mines Inspector, although that letter may have been written for different purposes. 
[55]
Furthermore, Mr Caffyn confirmed that there is a need to update survey information every 12 months, particularly in the Grey coal field. Other witnesses also confirmed that accurate survey information was very important. Mr Holly, manager of the nearby Roa Mine, stressed the importance of accurate survey information and that in his case, survey information was updated twice monthly. Mr Harrington, manager of the Terrace Mine, confirmed that surveys were carried out weekly at that mine. 
[56]
Mr Field was of the view that due to the lack of accurate survey data for the deeper sections of the Baddeley Mine, mining inside the limits of the barrier should have been warned against. 
[57]
Furthermore, … , in a letter that he wrote to Mr Cossman, Chief Advisor of Health and Safety, on the 21st of March 2006, wrote as follows: 
“I must also advise that I ran into Mr Bill Taylor in late January this year and raised the issue of Tiller Mine with Mr Taylor at that time. At the time of my visit underground I was concerned about the difficulties Tiller Mine was having obtaining appropriate surveying services. I had some concerns about the place in which the mine was working as I considered it crucial that proper surveying be undertaken to ensure that they did not break through. It had been my expectation that Mr Taylor would visit the mine following my discussion with him and I thought his visit would facilitate the obtaining of appropriate surveying services. 
I did file note my conversation with Mr Taylor and expect that I will need to refer to that if called before the coronial inquiry. ”
[58]
Mr Taylor's recall of that conversation was as follows. On Saturday the 28th of January 2006, he was at Mitre 10 in Greymouth checking on whether materials he ordered had been delivered when he was approached by … who engaged him in conversation. He said that … advised him that he had visited the Tiller Mine and that they had hit a fault. He recalled asking him if everything was okay at the mine, to which he said … responded “yeah, yeah”. He said that there was nothing in the conversation which led him to believe that there was any problem at Tillers Mine other than normal mining problems which happened in due course at any mine which were normally dealt with by management. 
[59]
Mr Taylor had in fact visited the mine in his capacity as an inspector over the last five years on quite a lot of occasions when the mine was being operated by the former owners, Messrs Tiller and Menzie. He understood the working face of the mine to be in the two levels that had originally been driven by the previous owners. He was aware that Messrs Tiller and Menzies had been working on those two tunnels for a period of time and they were not progressing them particularly quickly because they were looking to sell the mine and were therefore really just looking after things such as the water tunnel and trying to increase the size of that to make it easier for people to enter to and from the workings. 
[60]
He actually visited the mine on the 8th of September with the Electrical Safety Inspector to check out the electrical reticulation systems, but he did not proceed to the mine face. He had the impression, after speaking to Mr Haddow, that they were continuing to develop the two southerly drives. He did not recall any mention by … that the mine was having difficulty obtaining a surveyor, nor did he recall any discussion that work was continuing in another area. He said that if he had been told that work was continuing in an area different from where Messrs Tiller and Menzies had been working, then he would have remembered that because it was known that there were old workings in the area and working towards them would have been dangerous. As long as they were continuing on the road developed by Messrs Tiller and Menzies, namely going down the southern levels, there was no particular danger in that area. 
[61]
Mr Taylor was not seriously tested in cross-examination on his evidence and … elected not to give evidence. I accept, therefore, that Mr Taylor's account of the conversation between himself and … is the correct account. … letter of the 21st of March only serves to highlight that he did appreciate the significance of obtaining accurate survey data in order for the miners to avoid contacting the old Baddeley workings. 

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