Johannesburg, South Africa — 03 July 2012 – Gold Fields Limited – the world’s fourth-largest gold producer – has confirmed that five employees lost their lives from smoke inhalation at the 4 Shaft (Ya-Rona) of KDC West mine, near Merafong in South Africa, after a fire had broken out on Sunday night.
Expressing condolences to the families, friends and colleagues of the victims, CEO Nick Holland, said: “We will thoroughly investigate the causes of this accident.”
Executive vice president and head of Gold Fields’ South Africa region, Peter Turner, added: “On this particular shaft -Ya Rona – we’ve had 655 fatality free working days (2 years and 9 months) before this tragedy. This incident is highly regrettable in view of the significant safety improvements we’ve experienced on this mine. This shaft, together with the remaining 12 shafts on the KDC operation, has been closed and we will be cooperating fully with all stakeholders to investigate the cause of the accident.”
Of the 14 employees who were hospitalised on Sunday night for routine observation, three have been discharged. The remaining 11 are in a stable condition.
Fire fighters from the Mine Rescue Services have been working around the clock to bring the fire at Ya-Rona shaft under control.
Source: Gold Fields Limited. For more information, click here.