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Ninth confirmed case of black lung in Queensland

Photo: Ninth case of black lung in Queensland
A 62-year-old underground coal miner has become the ninth confirmed case of black lung in Queensland.

A ninth Queensland coal miner has been diagnosed with the potentially deadly black lung disease just a day after an eighth case was confirmed.

The 62-year-old and 55-year-old underground coal miners both worked at the Bowen Basin mines in the Central Queensland.

Black lung, officially known as pneumoconiosis, is caused by long-term exposure to fine airborne coal dust in areas with poor ventilation.

It was thought to have been eradicated in Australia for decades until last year when the Queensland's Department of Mines announced three new cases in December.
The nine confirmed cases are workers who have been reported to the Mine's health surveillance unit and validated by the department's occupational physician.

But the CFMEU says it is aware of dozens of cases yet to be acknowledged by the government.

The department has yet to confirm the diagnosis of a man in his early 40s who the mining union in May claimed had contracted the disease.

A Senate committee has been investigating the re-emergence of black lung, including issues around the detection and treatment.

Its interim report recommended the federal government establish a national coal dust monitoring group and states and territories adopt the national standard for coal dust exposure.

Queensland Mines Minister Anthony Lynham has ordered an independent review of the state's existing screening systems.

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