South Africa’s gold, platinum mines mark six months without fall-of-ground fatalities

20th July 2022

By: Tasneem Bulbulia

Creamer Media Contributing Editor Online


Font size: - +

South Africa achieved a record six months without a mining fatality caused by a fall-of-ground (Fog) incidents in its gold and platinum mines, industry body Minerals Council South Africa reports.

Building on the record performance in the first three months of the year, when one person was killed in a Fog incident in the coal sector, the leadership initiatives and the implementation of strategies, leading practices and the Minerals Council-led Fog Action Plan to mitigate incidents have resulted in no fatalities in the gold and platinum mines for the first six months of the year, the council says.

The entire industry was Fog-fatality-free in the second quarter of the year.

This is significant, because gold and platinum mines have not had a Fog-fatality-free first six months of the year in the history of South African mining, says Minerals Council safety head Dr Sizwe Phakathi.

There were 11 Fog fatalities by the end of June last year.

In the past three years, including the industry’s record safety performance in 2019, Fog fatalities accounted for at least 20 deaths in each of those three years.

“The Minerals Council commends all stakeholders, including mining companies, unions, employees, mine professional associations, the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy, suppliers, research institutions, the Mine Health and Safety Council and the Mining Qualifications Authority, who have all worked tirelessly and collaboratively to ensure every mine employee can return from work unharmed,” says Phakathi.

The Minerals Council board held a special meeting in December 2021 to agree on, and urgently implement, eight interventions to halt two years of regression in safety performances in the mining industry and then to reverse the trend.

In 2020 and 2021, the industry reported 60 and 74 fatalities, respectively, compared with the all-time low of 51 in 2019.

According to data available to the Minerals Council, 23 employees have died in the year to July 18 compared with 29 in the same period a year earlier, marking a 21% reduction and the best rate of reduction in fatalities in the first six months of a year, the council highlights.

“We are undertaking a comprehensive review to understand what went well and what we can learn from the past six months. The review will be done by the Minerals Council in collaboration with other stakeholders,” informs Phakathi.

The results of the review will be unveiled during the National Day of Health and Safety in Mining on August 3.

Edited by Chanel de Bruyn
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor Online


The content you are trying to access is only available to subscribers.

If you are already a subscriber, you can Login Here.

If you are not a subscriber, you can subscribe now, by selecting one of the below options.

For more information or assistance, please contact us at

Option 1 (equivalent of R125 a month):

Receive a weekly copy of Creamer Media's Engineering News & Mining Weekly magazine
(print copy for those in South Africa and e-magazine for those outside of South Africa)
Receive daily email newsletters
Access to full search results
Access archive of magazine back copies
Access to Projects in Progress
Access to ONE Research Report of your choice in PDF format

Option 2 (equivalent of R375 a month):

All benefits from Option 1
Access to Creamer Media's Research Channel Africa for ALL Research Reports, in PDF format, on various industrial and mining sectors including Electricity; Water; Energy Transition; Hydrogen; Roads, Rail and Ports; Coal; Gold; Platinum; Battery Metals; etc.

Already a subscriber?

Forgotten your password?