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M&R Cementation unveils mock-up underground mine training facility

M&R Cementation's mock-up mine

M&R Cementation's mock-up mine

14th February 2024

By: Marleny Arnoldi

Deputy Editor Online

     

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Mining contractor Murray & Roberts (M&R) Cementation has unveiled its new mechanised mining mock-up facility, which serves to provide equipment operators and supervisors with a more realistic learning experience.

The facility simulates the conditions of a working underground mine and comprises a fully immersive learning experience across the underground mining value chain.

The mock-up mine comprises a 3.5-m-high structure covering 1 125 m2, which, together with equipment installed, required an investment of more than R35-million.

The facility is located at the company’s Bentley Park complex, near Carletonville, in Gauteng.

Learners not only experience the look and feel of an underground bord-and-pillar mine, but even have the smells and sounds of such an operation, explains M&R Cementation education, training and development executive Tony Pretorius

To build skills, operators need to put their theoretical learning into practice – but the pressurised production environment of a real mine is often not the ideal location.

Rather, the mock-up facility provides a safe and low-cost learning environment where learners can practice their skills without hindering production or compromising safety. Simultaneously, they garner the sensory experience for developing the muscle memory required for the real-life workplace.

The mock-up facility is equipped with first-line equipment such as drill rigs and bolters, as well as machinery for loading, hauling and dumping blasted rock.

Pretorius explains that learners are taken through the full value chain of mechanised mining activities from waiting places, entry exam and safe declaration to the installation of support and cleaning of blasted rock.

M&R’s Training Academy follows the situational leadership model, which places considerable value on learner participation in activities to entrench their applied competence.

Edited by Chanel de Bruyn
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor Online

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