Platinum group metals miner Impala Platinum (Implats) has confirmed that an incident happened at its 20 Shaft, in Rustenburg, on the evening of October 21, rendering some workers in need of evacuation.
The incident occurred as a result of a mechanical failure in the rock conveyance system. In turn, this triggered all the related safety systems with respect to the entire shaft system, including the main worker and material hoist.
Implats confirmed that no injuries occurred to the nine people in the hoist at the time of the incident.
The company on Thursday afternoon said seven people working at the bottom of the shaft still needed to be evacuated.
Implats’ Johan Theron confirmed to Mining Weekly that the company was assessing the safest route to evacuate the people, since this could either be through the 20 Shaft main hoist or an adjacent shaft; regardless, he said they would be safely out in a few hours.
The shaft will remain closed until the company completes a full investigation and implements the required safety or repair protocols.