So. Africa: Fatalities on mines have significantly dropped this year according to the S.A minerals Council

Author: Charlotte Mathews, Miningmx (South Africa), Published on: 7 October 2019

‘SA mining on course for best ever safety record after horror regression of 2017/18’ 1 October 2019

THE number of deaths on South African mines has almost halved so far this year compared with last year, and could make 2019 a record low, said the Minerals Council South Africa. This was after a renewed focus on safety by government, mining companies and labour. Between January and 23 September 2019, 35 people died on the country’s mines, of whom two were women, compared with 63 in the same period last year. The latest safety strategy, called Khumbul’ekhaya (“remember home” – because fatalities have the greatest effect on the families concerned) follows 25 years of initiatives to cut mining deaths that ran into the hundreds each year up to 1994.

…After an 88% decline in fatality frequency rates on the mines over 25 years, there were 90 deaths in 2017, up from 73 in 2016, which made it evident that more work was needed. Themba Mkhwanazi, CEO of Kumba Iron Ore, and chair of the CEO Zero Harm Forum, said after the regression in fatality trends in 2017, that CEOs recognised the need for rethinking leadership on safety, and “putting words into action”. There was intensive introspection within the forum, followed by further research into the causes of fatalities. It was obvious that a multi-disciplinary approach was needed that addressed greater visible leadership, applying technology to making workplaces safer, learning from incidents and each other, and changing behaviour.

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