Ok Tedi Mining Limited (OTML) today announced that it will suspend its international charter flights to Cairns until further notice.
The Company made this announcement after further discussions with the Queensland Health and the Queensland Police following further reports of COVID-19 cases being detected in Queensland from international travelers undergoing hotel quarantine.
Last week OTML announced that it was suspending its international charter flights for two weeks after a number of personnel were tested positive for COVID-19 while in hotel quarantine in Cairns. The Company said those personnel have since been released from the Cairns Hospital after completing their isolation period.
“We take the wellbeing of our personnel very seriously as well as our responsibility to the Australian community in relation to our FIFO travel. The Company continues to review the effectiveness of our control measures and adjust them based on World Health Organisation, PNG and Australian best practice advice. We would like to recognise and thank the work of the Queensland Police and Queensland Health for the extraordinary care provided to our personnel” it stated.
From the commencement of the pandemic in early 2020, OTML developed and implemented its COVID-19 Management Plan to ensure the safety, health and well-being of employees, families, contractors and host communities, whilst continuing to safely operate. This includes compliance with all protocols for re-entry to Australia.
The Company has successfully rotated personnel on FIFO rosters on dedicated charter planes without incident until the recent cases were identified in quarantine in Cairns, whereupon OTML immediately suspended these charter flights.
OTML is liaising closely with Queensland Health and Queensland Police to agree on additional revised protocols for personnel to re-enter Australia. On arrival in Australia all personnel will continue to fully comply with all current Australian quarantine requirements.