Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 19 January 2009 – DRDGold Limited – the fourth-largest gold producer in Africa – reports that the 167 employees trapped underground in a weekend blackout at one of its mines have been rescued and are back on the surface.
A media release issued here this morning confirmed that power had been restored at the Number Five shaft of the Blyvooruitzicht mine, near Carletonville. The incident followed a lightning strike on the two sub-stations supplying power to the shaft on Saturday evening. Mine engineers had been able to restore power to both the sub-shaft and main shaft winder systems at the No 5 shaft, and all the employees involved had been brought to surface.
A mine spokesman confirmed that during the time that they were underground, the miners had remained safely in refuge bays, with adequate water and ventilation. Telephone contact was maintained from surface throughout the period, and two proto teams also accessed the area via an alternative shaft.
The spokesman added that no employees had been injured. Six had been brought to surface earlier in the day. They had been admitted to hospital for potential smoke inhalation and had subsequently been released.
“There was no loss in output,” the spokesman added.