Conference: MRA Safety in Deep Mining
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Presenter: Brian O’Connor
Abstract: Presented by Brian O’Connor at MRA Safety in Deep Mining

It is common practice following accidents, especially those involving fatalities or serious injuries, to seek ways to prevent them from recurring. Quite often the focus is on engineering out the dangers by introducing technical solutions. On large machines such as winders or main fans, we have often put additional interlocking switches in the circuits to physically stop the machine from doing something it did in the past that created an unsafe condition. Interlocking the shaft station gates with the winders is a good example.

At Anglo Platinum, like most mining companies, technical solutions were introduced at mine level to try prevent recurrences. As can be imagined, some solutions worked and some were less successful. Also, in a company of this size, the dissemination of information and selling of ideas and best practice is often less than perfect. In October 2006, the Technical Directors decided to set up a portfolio to standardise on the best technical solutions and implement them in a structured manner across the company.