South Africa – Universal Coal, the ASX-listed coal junior has resumed blasting activities at Kangala colliery following the unconditional lifting of the Section 54 notice in terms of the Mine Health and Safety Act.

The Section 54 was issued on 16 March following a high potential incident (HPI) at Kangala, which led to several employees obtaining minor injuries during a blast whilst performing their normal duties at their place of work away from the blast.

Kangala plant and coal stockpiling (Photo: Universal Coal)
Kangala plant and coal stockpiling (Photo: Universal Coal)

All blasting activities on the mine were halted, with operations outside of blasting and the use of explosives continuing unabated.

There however were no significant production losses due to the Section 54. Located in the Witbank coalfield of South Africa, the Kangala Colliery produces 2.4 Mtpa run-of-mine (ROM) thermal coal, with capacity to increase to 4.25 Mtpa ROM.

Universal Coal views the safety of its workers and the local community a priority and as such is committed to maintaining the highest safety standards and working conditions.

To date, the Kangala colliery has had an impeccable safety record, having been recently commended by Coal Safe 2014 (an annual coal safety conference).  Management will continue to demand best practice from its contractors and employees.

Earlier this month Universal Coal has announced record sales at its Kangala colliery for the month of February 2015 of 172 000 t – 28 000 t over target.

The record comes almost 12 months following maiden production at Kangala colliery.

Of the record result, 160 000 t of domestic thermal coal was delivered to Eskom and 12 000 t were exported through the Richards Bay Coal Terminal.

The result follows the successful achievement of target sales for the month of January 2015, and positions the company well to deliver a strong Q3, 2015 result.

Besides the record sales tonnes, Kangala also achieved the milestone of having processed 2 Mt through the Coal Handling and Preparation Plant from the start of production to date.

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