our people

mining duo celebrate 40 years
Brian Manning and Graeme Roberts embarked on their Alcoa careers in the same year, on the same day, in the same work area. 

Now, 40 years down the track, they are both still with Alcoa and loving it.

Brian began his career at Alcoa’s Jarrahdale Mine where he was assigned the job of Survey Assistant.  After spending six months in survey, he became the youngest operator on site driving the Euclid R25 Haul Truck with a carrying capacity of 25 tonnes. He says the biggest change he’s seen over his 40 Alcoa years is the safety culture.

“Ear protection did not become mandatory until 1970. We were then introduced to reusable ear plugs that were washed out at the end of shift and put back in the container provided to be used again,” he said.

“Back then it was very unusual to see anyone with ear muffs on.

Today it would be strange to see our fellow workers without ear protection. It has become the norm.” 

Not only is ear protection the norm, it’s also mandatory and a breach of Alcoa policy not to wear it.

Brian is now enjoying life as a Security Officer at Huntly Mine. Outside of Alcoa, he continues to run his own business and is heavily involved in community work in the Serpentine area of WA.

Graeme Roberts, affectionately known as ‘Grump’, has called Jarrahdale home for most of his life.

He arrived at Jarrahdale, with Brian, as a Trade Assistant but soon moved to the Survey Department where he became responsible for Pit Surveying and Bush Pegging.

In 1986 he moved to the Production Department where he was responsible for noise monitoring and reporting vital data, and in the mid-90s he took on his current role as Production Group Leader.

Graeme agrees that safety has changed Alcoa, and he believes the primary focus is firmly on safety when carrying out any task today.  

Alcoa’s number one priority is always the health and safety of our people and the communities where we operate.  Alcoa of Australia has one of the lowest lost workday injury rates in the country.  Our performance is better than the mining, construction, agriculture, forestry and fishing, and even retail trade industries.

“The change in the equipment size used nowadays and the technology available is also truly amazing,” Graeme said.

return to front page

Click image to enlarge.

40 year employee Brian Manning

Click image to enlarge.

Graeme ‘Grump’ Roberts has also notched up 40 years with Alcoa