13 February 2018

South Africa: Another Worker Dies At a Sibanye-Stillwater Mine

A mineworker died after he was crushed by a box of gold ore at Sibanye-Stillwater's Masakhane shaft, at its Driefontein Operations outside of Carletonville, the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) said on Tuesday.

AMCU president Joseph Mathunjwa said in a statement that the incident had happened around 17:30 on Monday.

"According to reports the box fell after blasting caused it to come loose and fall on the deceased," Mathunjwa said.

The man's body was recovered around 03:00 on Tuesday.

"This accident is the third fatality this month, after two mineworkers were killed at Sibanye-Stillwater's Kloof Operations due to a fall of ground, only last week."

The two trapped miners were confirmed dead at the Kloof Ikamva shaft of Sibanye-Stillwater's mine in Gauteng on February 7.

Seven days earlier, on January 31, 955 miners were trapped at a Sibanye-Stillwater Gold mine in Welkom following an electric cable outage during a storm.

The two 132kV lines supplying mines in the Welkom area collapsed due to a severe storm, leaving mines in the area without electricity supply.

The miners were eventually rescued two days later on February 2.

Mathunjwa said he was concerned about the safety standards and contingency plans in place at Sibanye-Stillwater.

"Of even greater concern, is the lacking communication from Sibanye-Stillwater to stakeholders once incidents take place, leaving AMCU to rely solely on its regional leadership structures to get information".

The union sent its heartfelt condolences to the family, co-workers and loved ones of the worker.

"Our prayers are with them during this trying time. AMCU shall continue to campaign that the lives of mineworkers are handled with the respect and care required. We cannot allow workers to be sacrificed due to the narrow profit-driven interests of the mining bosses," Mathunjwa added.

Sibanye-Stillwater's spokesperson James Wellsted could not be immediately reached for comment.

Source: News24

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