Probe of Implats mine accident is vital, says Cyril Ramaphosa
The president expressed sadness at the deaths and injuries at the mine in North West
President Cyril Ramaphosa has called on all stakeholders to assist the chief inspector of mines in the investigation into the deaths of 11 miners at Rustenburg’s Impala Platinum mine shaft 11, on Monday.
Presidency spokesperson Vincent Magwenya said the probe would be conducted in terms of the Mine Health and Safety Act.
“This process is vital to protect mineworkers in line with the industry’s zero-harm objectives and enable operational continuity in mines,” said Magwenya.
Ramaphosa expressed sadness at the deaths and injuries affecting colleagues at the mine in North West.
“The president offers his deep condolences to the families of the deceased mineworkers. The president extends his thoughts to the management and staff of Implats and wishes the injured workers, especially those who are in critical care, a full recovery,” said Magwenya.
The accident, which involved the conveyance transporting the miners to the surface from underground, left at least 75 employees injured.
“The 11 shaft personnel conveyance was hoisting employees to surface at the end of their shift. At 4.54pm, the conveyance unexpectedly started descending. Its rapid descent was stopped by the conveyance counterweight becoming trapped by the jack catches,” Implats said.
All mining operations at Impala Rustenburg were suspended on Tuesday.
“This is the darkest day in the history of Implats and our hearts are heavy for the lives lost and the individuals affected by this devastating accident,” said Implats CEO Nico Muller.
“We are deeply shocked and saddened by the loss of our colleagues and are in the process of ensuring all next of kin have been contacted. Implats is offering ongoing support to the families and colleagues of those lost in service. We also hold our injured colleagues in our thoughts at this incredibly difficult time.”
The company confirmed 75 employees involved in Monday's shaft accident remain hospitalised, 14 of whom are in critical condition.
Muller said the company will assist with the burials of those who lost their lives and continue to support their families.
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