Johannesburg, South Africa — 04 July 2012 – Africa’s top gold miner AngloGold Ashanti Limited has expressed the hope that the introduction of better mining technology in South Africa will improve the standard of mine safety in the country.
Fin24 quotes AngloGold CEO Mark Cutifani as telling a mining seminar here that “we think that’s the ultimate answer, to take people out of those dangerous areas.”
Last Friday, the company drilled an extra 30 metres into a section of reef, for the first time in 100 years using a horizontal raised drill. This could revolutionise mining, said Cutifani.
He was speaking as another company, Gold Fields Limited, said a weekend fire at its KDC mine near Carletonville, which killed five miners, was still burning.
Cutifani said one aspect of keeping mines safe was breaking old patterns, such as people not knowing each other’s first names because they came from different regions, and spoke different languages.
In an attempt to change the nature of personal relationships at its mines, the company was taking every crew away for a period together so that people could get to know each other, and change the nature of their working relationships. “It’s a total transformation of the way we work together,” he said.
In the meantime, the company was focusing on leadership, training, and development to prevent accidents. He pointed out that the company had improved its safety record over the last four-and-a-half years by over 70%.
In its results for the quarter ending 31 March 2012, the group’s fatal injury frequency rate posted on the company’s website had regressed from 0.02 in the December quarter to 0.11 in the March quarter. According to provisional figures from the mineral resources department, 63 people had died in mine fatalities since 1 January 2012. There had been 1,425 injuries.
Source: Fin24. For more information, click here.