News

Joanne fights for safety in mining

Joanne Ufer with a plaque commemorating her son Josh who died in New Zealand’s Pike River mine disaster.
Joanne Ufer with a plaque commemorating her son Josh who died in New Zealand’s Pike River mine disaster. Chris Ison

JOANNE Ufer knows the heartache of losing a loved one in a mine disaster.

Her son Josh was among 29 miners killed in New Zealand's Pike River coal mine explosion in November 2010.

Josh, 25, died soon after finding out he was going to be a father.

His daughter was born six months after he died.

Now Josh's mother, a Zilzie resident, is the face of a union campaign about safety in Queensland's coal mines.

Joanne features in a CFMEU television advertisement - she says it's a way to do something for her son and the others who didn't survive Pike River.

"It would be sad to think that these men and other people who have died from mining incidents would have died in vain and we hope that we can learn from past mistakes," she said.

"I'm a mum on a mission.

"Mine safety is a matter of life and death. It is just too important to be handed over just to management."

The television ad shows Joanne supporting calls to ensure worker safety is considered more important than production targets at Queensland coalmines.

A subsequent inquiry heard evidence that management at the Pike River mine was under pressure to put production levels ahead of safety concerns.

Father's Day 2010 was the last time Joanne saw her son before he returned to New Zealand to work.

It was also the day Josh told his mother that he was going to be a father.

"I have been deeply shocked by the evidence of negligence by management at the (Pike River) mine and I never want any other family to have to go through what we have."

Topics:  mines safety tv commercial


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Council orders developers to stop work

ISSUE: Orianna Resort Group is appealing Moreton Bay Regional Council's stop work notice.

Council orders developers to stop work

Coast driver spent '3km in wrong lane' before head-on crash

HIGH SPEED: The charged Sunshine Coast man was driving the purple car, in the photo.

A Coast man allegedly drove 3km in wrong lane before head-on smash

An eager eye for trains

TRAIN ENTHUSIAST: Noel Walker builds his miniature models in his home at Arcare in Caboolture.

Noel Walker hasn't let losing his sight hold him back.

Local Partners

Crikey! Why more crocs are heading south

CROC MAP: Crocodile expert says a population boom and warmer waters are drawing more of the prehistoric predators further south

REVIEW: Under the Gun doco looks at right to bear arms

ARMED: A still from the 2016 documentary film Under the Gun by Stephanie Soechtig.

An in-depth look into America's gun culture.

Messing with your head

MIND BLOWN: What could be weirder than the realisation that we have another completely separate brain and nervous system than the one originating in our heads?

Fascinating connection between your gut and your brain

Sir Elton John coming to Mackay: What you need to know

Sir Elton will come to Mackay and Cairns in September.

Tickets to the concert go on sale on March 14

Former Family Matters stare accused of child abuse

DARIUS McCrary, who played Eddie Winslow on the ’90s sitcom Family Matters, has been accused of holding his infant daughter over a pot of boiling water.

Bindi Irwin's birthday tribute to her dad

Bindi Irwin

Bindi Irwin has paid tribute to her dad on his 55th birthday

Reality TV show gives Maryborough a boost

*WARNING EMBARGOED until 9.15pm Monday January 30* Sean Hollands and Susan Rawlings pictured after their wedding on the TV series Married At First Sight. Supplied by Channel 9.

Maryborough looks good on reality TV show.

Buderim dad rejects gay son's emotional plea for second time

LOVERS: Grant and Chris have been together for more than three years, and Chris' parents refuse to acknowledge their son's fiance.

Son’s emotional plea rejected again by unmoved father

What's on the big screen this week

Ewan McGregor and Jonny Lee Miller in a scene from the movie T2: Trainspotting.

This week's new releases offer plenty of variety for movie buffs.

REVIEW: Under the Gun doco looks at right to bear arms

ARMED: A still from the 2016 documentary film Under the Gun by Stephanie Soechtig.

An in-depth look into America's gun culture.

Hodges proud to be part of first channel dedicated to NRL

Justin Hodges is gearing up for his new gig on Fox League.

Footy star hopes to provide a voice for players on new NRL channel

$140k damage: landlord says property trashed, contaminated

He had what he calls "the tenants from hell"

Submarine, buses and 3000 tyres removed in $100K clean up

The list of things removed from this property is beyond astonishing

Popular island resort sells to loaded international investor

OUR PICK: Chris Foey's colourful shot of one of Gladstone's great tourism hot spots, Heron Island.

International investor snaps up piece of Gladstone paradise.

Expert: Why renters, home buyers may struggle

Matusik Property Insights director Michael Matusik.

What's next for the city's housing market

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!