Northern Star Resources was the overall winner at the Mining Emergency Response Competition (MERC) on the weekend, with their Jundee Team the stand out against 15 teams over two days in seven events.

MERC was held at Langley Park with emergency response teams participating in simulated events covering all disciplines; first aid, confined space, firefighting, hazardous material response, vertical rescue, road crash rescue and emergency response team readiness.

Jundee Team Captain Jason Ullrich said it all came down to commitment and team work. 

“I believe you’re only as good as your team and it was a great honour to lead such a committed team.

"Our team worked hard together; they were dynamic, flexible and forward thinking," Jason said.

It was the first time the team had ever competed. Northern Star run weekly emergency response training on site but for this competition the team completed two weeks of intensive training.

"The learning, knowledge and skills you take away from a competition like this is invaluable," Jason continued.

“Northern Star take the health and safety of their employees and the community very seriously and we couldn’t have achieved this without the support of management on site and in corporate.”

Northern Star Resources Chief Executive Officer Stuart Tonkin was thrilled with the result and commitment of the team.

"Given our operations are remote, first responders and independence to manage emergencies is critical to maintaining our operations and supporting the communities in which we operate," said Stuart.

"We of course are focused on the prevention of incidents, but emergency preparedness must be taken seriously and the Jundee Team demonstrated that fantastically on the weekend. A proud moment to show their commitment," he continued. 

Northern Star were up against teams from AngloGold Ashanti, Newmont, Fortescue Metals, Synergy, Rio Tinto, Premier Coal and Karara Mining.

The Jundee Team included Jason Ullrich (Captain), Zach McLeay (Vice Captain), Sandra Wagner (Medic), Audie Trutwein (2nd Medic), Leon Mussell (1st Assist), Wes Firth (2nd Assist), Jaxon Evans (Reserve) and Ben Grave (Manager).

Here is how they placed over the 10 categories to take out overall first place.

  • 1st place – Confined Space Rescue
  • 1st place – Hazmat Scenario
  • 1st place – First Aid Scenario
  • 1st place – Overall First Aid
  • 1st place – Overall Team Safety
  • 1st place – Best Captain
  • 1st place – Best Medic
  • 2nd Place – Road Crash Rescue
  • 2nd Place – Vertical Rescue
  • 2nd Place – Overall BA Skills