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Health News

Third-party fire staff may not be adequately trained, says fire firm

By: Leandi Kolver     18th April 2008 Third-party guarding staff on mine sites may not always be adequately trained to deal effectively with fire emergencies, says Xtralis' Dave Boyack. "Inhouse procedures are up to standard on the mines, but sometimes they employ third party companies whose standards or guards'... 

Pamodzi worker dies in Free State mine

By: Mariaan Webb     17th April 2008 JSE-listed gold-miner Pamodzi Gold said on Thursday that it had stopped all operations at its Free State operation's No 3 shaft, after an employee was killed in a fall of ground accident. The accident occurred at 9:15 some 1 840 m below surface. 

Solidarity adds its voice to anti-Angloplat chorus 

16th April 2008 The world's biggest platinum-miner, Anglo Platinum (Angloplat), continues to make headlines for all the wrong reasons, with South African trade union Solidarity announcing on Wednesday that it was preparing to bring charges against the company with the country's Human Rights Commission... 

Worker killed at BHP Billiton colliery - union

By: Liezel Hill     15th April 2008 A worker died on Tuesday at BHP Billiton's Khuthala colliery, near Witbank in South Africa's Mpumalanga province, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) said. The incident was a result of a fall of ground, the union said in a statement. 

Managing safety, health, environment central to business success, says Exxaro

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     11th April 2008 Managing safety, health and environment (SHE) is central to the success of business and is an important aspect in establishing suitable mitigation measures that are integral to achieving zero harm, says diversified miner Exxaro in its latest annual report. 

Headgear erected for Impala Platinum’s new No 17 shaft

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     11th April 2008 Mine services company Shaft Sinkers has completed the erection of a 218 t headgear at Impala Platinum’s new No 17 ventilation shaft in Rustenburg, North West Province. Also responsible for the sinking of the main and refrigeration shafts, the company’s full involvement at the Impala... 

Mineworker fatalities sounding health and safety alarm bells

By: Sylvester Haskins     4th April 2008 The increase in mineworker fatalities over the last two years, in South African mining operations, has sounded alarm bells for the tripartite Mine Health and Safety Council (MHSC) which is actively investigating this mineworker scourge, reports MHSC acting GM Mthokozisi Zondi.  

New x-ray machine settles dust around silicosis

By: Sylvester Haskins     4th April 2008 The advent of an x-ray diffraction (XRD) machine promises to enhance research into the harmful affects of silica dust on mine workers, in deep-level gold mines in South Africa. 

New system analyses environmental, physiological risk factors for mineworkers

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     4th April 2008 Electronic research and development house Netshield South Africa has developed a system that monitors and analyses environmental and physiological risk factors for mineworkers. 

Ezulwini gold plant heading for incident-free April commissioning

By: Leandi Kolver     28th March 2008 The construction of the uranium- and gold-processing facilities at Ezulwini is on track, with commissioning of the gold plant expected to begin in April says MDM Engineering, which says that it has achieved 500 000 lost-time injury-free (LTIF) hours at Ezulwini metallurgical plant and associated... 

Human rights group decries relocation of poor for platinum

By: Matthew Hill     25th March 2008 World number-one platinum producer Anglo Platinum (Angloplat) has again come under fire from a human rights group, this time South Africa-based ActionAid, for causing communities in Limpopo province to lose their farmland and access to fresh water. In a statement, ActionAid said that because of... 

Worker dies at Harmony's Masimong mine

By: Liezel Hill     17th March 2008 A person was killed on Monday after a fall of ground at Harmony Gold's Masimong mine, in South Africa's Free State province, the company said. The accident occurred at 12:30, on level 1 750 in a ledging stope, and it appeared the incident was caused by the collapse of a brow, Harmony... 

Union conducted own investigation into Assmang blast

By: Olivia Soraya Spadavecchia     12th March 2008 The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) said on Wednesday that the efforts of the expert it had appointed to investigate the blast at Assmang's Cato Ridge works had been hampered. Numsa spokesperson Mziwakhe Hlangani explained that University of Cape Town's industrial... 

Worker at Eritrea project injured by ground ordnance

By: Liezel Hill     11th March 2008 The driver of the project contractor's vehicle susustained minor injuries at the site of the Bisha gold project, in Eritrea, on Friday, after the vehicle was damaged by a ground ordnance, probably a land mine, Vancouver-based Nevsun Resources said. “Based on all information available,... 

Great Basin gets approval for second Burnstone shaft

10th March 2008 Gold firm Great Basin Gold (GBG) has received government approval for its amended environmental management plan, effectively giving it the go ahead to sink a vertical shaft, which will serve as a second outlet at the mine. 

Buffelsfontein miner killed in loco accident - Simmers

10th March 2008 A worker was killed in a locomotive accident at gold and uranium producer Simmer & Jack Mine’s Buffelsfontein mine at the weekend, the company said on Monday. The accident took place at the number two shaft, and the firm stated that all tramming had been stopped pending an... 

Implats lauds ‘hero’ employee for saving the lives of two contractors

By: Matthew Hill     7th March 2008 South Africa's second-biggest platinum producer, Impala Platinum, on Friday sent out a media statement lauding one of its workers as a hero, after he saved the lives of two contractors. Boilermaker Gabriel Letageng was inspecting repairs at a concentrator in Rustenburg when he smelt fumes... 

New technology to alleviate security, attendance issues

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     7th March 2008 London Stock Exchange-listed biometric security products manufacturer RCG has launched a biometric-face recognition solution for the mining industry, in an effort to improve security and time attendance. 

None of ten suffering from manganism, says Assmang

By: Margie Inggs     7th March 2008 Assmang, one of the country's two largest manganese producers, is disputing that any of its employees is suffering from manganism, a condition resembling Parkinson's disease. 

Gold Fields says missing Beatrix worker confirmed dead

By: Matthew Hill     6th March 2008 Africa's number-two gold producer Gold Fields confirmed on Thursday that the missing worker at its Free State Beatrix mine was dead. After a fall-of-ground incident on Tuesday, Gold Fields managed to rescue one worker the following day, but the other missing employee died underground,... 

Blast-hit Assmang plant likely to only restart by month-end

By: Olivia Soraya Spadavecchia     5th March 2008 Assmang's ferromanganese smelters at its Cato Ridge works, which were closed ten days ago owing to a blast that killed six people, remained out of operation, African Rainbow Minerals ferrous CE Jan Steenkamp confirmed on Wednesday. He explained that a report, following an investigation... 

Gold Fields finds trapped Beatrix worker, search for colleague continues

By: Matthew Hill     5th March 2008 JSE-listed gold major Gold Fields was still searching for a worker after a fall-of-ground accident at its Beatrix mine in the Free State on Tuesday morning, and the situation was "not looking good", a spokesperson said on Wednesday. The good news was that rescue workers had reached a... 

Barrick offers expertise to improve SA safety record

By: Liezel Hill     4th March 2008 A top executive at the world's biggest gold-miner, Toronto-based Barrick Gold, on Tuesday pledged the company's assistance in tackling safety problems in South Africa's mining industry. “I would certainly be very pleased to go to South Africa with some of my safety... 

Govt stops blast-hit Assmang expansion

By: Matthew Hill     28th February 2008 The South African government has put a stop to the R1-billion Assmang expansion following the death of six employees, CE Jan Steenkamp confirmed on Thursday. Steenkamp told Mining Weekly Online that the expansion could, as a result, be pushed back by six months. The KwaZulu-Natal Department of... 

Assmang furnace explosion death toll climbs

By: Mariaan Webb     27th February 2008 African Rainbow Minerals (Arm) confirmed on Wednesday that a sixth person had died as a result of Sunday’s explosion at Assmang’s Cato Ridge plant, outside Durban. Earlier this week it reported that five workers had died and that four were seriously injured. The company, which... 

US coal mine resumes output after roof collapse

By: Liezel Hill     26th February 2008 US coal-miner Consol Energy has resumed production at two of the four sections at its Buchanan mine, in Virginia, which was closed in July last year after roof falls damaged some of the ventilation controls in the mine, necessitating a general evacuation of the mine. Repairs were still needed at... 

Two workers dead at Harmony's Bambanani mine

By: Creamer Media Reporter      26th February 2008 Two workers died and one was in a critical condition after a tremor at Africa's number-three gold producer Harmony Gold Mining's Bambanani mine in the Free State, on Tuesday. Harmony said that a seismic event measuring 2,1 magnitude on the Richter scale occured at 63 level 73 stope... 

Mine arson ‘a real threat', says Pamodzi Gold's new President Steyn boss

By: Martin Creamer     25th February 2008 Underground mine arson needed to be exposed as "a real threat", Pamodzi Gold's new President Steyn head, Fanie van Staden said. Van Staden, who has taken over as mine manager of President Steyn gold mine, said that arson was clearly to blame for many mine fires. "I have learnt... 

Smelter explosion kills five as manganese poisoning probe restarts

By: Olivia Soraya Spadavecchia     25th February 2008 The inquiry into the cases of manganism at Assmang's ferromanganese smelter, the Cato Ridge works, in Durban, reconvened on Monday following a period of adjournment. The restart of the inquiry has coincided with an explosion at the smelter over the weekend that claimed the lives of five... 

Judgement in landmark occupational health case expected within a month

By: Christy van der Merwe     12th February 2008 The second day of the High Court hearing, which could open the floodgates to claims from mine workers to sue their employers, came to an end on Tuesday afternoon. Judge Meyer Joffe reserved judgement in the case between an ex-mineworker who contracted silicosis after 16 year of working in... 

Precedent-setting silicosis case under way in Johannesburg

By: Christy van der Merwe     11th February 2008 A High Court hearing to determine whether or not former mineworker Thembekile Mankayi, who was discharged after contracting silicosis, will be entitled to sue gold major AngloGold Ashanti for damages, will enter its second day on Tuesday. Much of Monday's proceedings centred around the... 

AngloGold Ashanti silicosis case starts in High Court

By: Christy van der Merwe     11th February 2008 The High Court in Johannesburg will on Monday and Tuesday hear arguments, and be called up to rule whether or not ex-mineworkers who have contracted the ‘occupational lung disease’ silicosis, will be entitled to sue their employers for damages. The hearing follows the institution of a... 

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