Eleven miners tragically lost their lives in a devastating underground accident at Impala Platinum (Implats) in Rustenburg, North West, due to a snapped conveyance.
Impala Platinum mass deaths: Here’s how the miners were killed
On a fateful Monday afternoon, an unforeseen tragedy struck the Impala Platinum mine in Rustenburg.
A conveyance, a crucial component of the mine’s transportation system, catastrophically snapped. Johan Theron, a spokesperson for Implats, confirmed this harrowing incident, which led to the loss of eleven miners’ lives.
The conveyance was transporting a total of 88 miners at the time of the accident.
Following the accident, Implats swiftly mobilised paramedics and their proto teams to the site. The company disclosed that the accident involved a winder rope connected to the personnel conveyance, essential for hoisting employees to and from the depths of the mine.
This equipment’s failure was at the heart of the tragedy. The conveyance consisted of three levels, each designed to carry 35 personnel, pointing to the potential scale of the disaster.
The complexity of the rescue operation was immediately evident, with several miners suffering serious injuries. Implats’ teams accessed the underground workings, managing to clear the two upper levels of the conveyance.
The focus then shifted to the lower level, where the rescue efforts continued in earnest.
“The safety of our employees is paramount and we are providing all possible support to those involved and working closely with the relevant authorities,”
Implats pledged to provide regular updates as new information emerged.
“We remain steadfast in our dedication to ensuring our colleagues are brought home safely and continue to prioritise safety above all else,” the statement read.