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So. Africa: Settlement in silicosis class action lawsuit by mineworkers against gold mining companies expected by year-end

"Settlement likely by year-end as parties in silicosis case pursue out-of-court option", 5 May 2017

Mining companies facing a class action suit from mineworkers who developed silicosis on South Africa’s gold mines are expected to reach an out-of-court settlement before the close of the year. The class action...comprises...an estimated 100 000 former and current mineworkers who developed the disease...after 1965...A settlement...could be a significant victory for both parties, given that, in a case as complex as this one, the legal class action process could drag on for up to 15 years...[Silicosis] is caused by the inhalation of microscopic dust particles of crystalised silica – a mineral prevalent in South African gold orebodies – which, over an extended period, causes scarring of the lung tissue, making it difficult for the patient to breathe...[Sibanye Gold, Harmony Gold, Gold Fields, AngloGold Ashanti, Anglo American and African Rainbow Minerals are part of a] working group...addressing issues relating to the monitoring and medical care of mineworkers, and compensation paid to those infected...

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