Traversing the haulage roads to transport coal from the pit and deliver his loads to the plant has been an exhilarating experience for Max Mkheswa (30), who is a graduate of the mobile machinery for surface mining training programme which took place at Khanye Colliery in 2019.
Less than a year after completing the training programme he started working as an articulated dump truck (ADT) operator for Canyon Mining Services in July 2020.
He describes it as life a changing experience. “I never thought of working in the mining industry prior to this.”
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Max was born in the small township of Rethabiseng, in Bronkhorstspruit.
He attended Rethabiseng Primary School and Mpumelelo Secondary School, before acquiring a tertiary qualification in Business Administration.
Max worked as an intern for the City of Tshwane carrying out admin work and then did a few odd jobs in the construction sector before becoming a taxi driver.
He saw an opportunity to take part in an ADT training programme at Khanye Colliery and he applied.
“I applied because I wanted to improve my skills and give myself the opportunity to be challenged by getting exposure to a new industry that I knew very little about previously.”
“Prior to doing the training I thought that mining just entailed digging big holes, but now I understand that it involves a lot more than that.
“Following the training I feel that I may in future pursue a career in health and safety in mining,” he remarks.
This is because he received Hazchem firefighting and first aid training during the training programme, which has sparked his interest in the area.
Max hopes to be a role model for his family in order to show them that if you work hard and challenge yourself, you can succeed in life. “I want to show people that no matter what circumstances you are facing, you can achieve great things.”
“Canyon Coal has provided me with this amazing opportunity and every day I hope give my all to repay them for the support and confidence they have shown in me,” states Max.