Rosewood History

Diesel Loco for Coal Mine Haul

(Brisbane Telegraph, Thursday 11 October 1951, page 2)

A diesel locomotive will work in a Queensland coal mine for the first time next month.

A 15 h.p. engine will haul coal 60 feet underground in the Westvale Colliery, Rosewood. It will operate in the mine’s main haulage road where sleepers and special steel tracks have been laid. The locomotive is Austrian-made and was bought for £1,500. It will haul 75 metric tons of coal. 

Safety regulations forbid the use of diesel engines in coal mines, but the locomotive contains a special device for treating its own exhaust fumes.

The day it starts work, the locomotive will help solve the colliery’s labour problem.  It will obviate hand-wheeling in the main haulage road and will release men for other jobs. Officials hope that with the displaced labour the colliery will increase its present output of 120 tons a day. 

The locomotive will be driven by a young shift-man miner who studied diesel engines when he heard the colliery was buying the locomotive. 

An authority on Queensland coal mining said the machine was the first to be introduced into Queensland, but other collieries were following suit. 

In the post-war era, world coal mining had made gigantic strides through mechanisation. 

(A western New South Wales’ mine, Kandos, has increased its output, by complete mechanisation, 200 per’ cent in the last 10 years.)