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2016 Rings out as the safest year in mining yet

2016 Marks the safest year for many countries.

Mining is generally known as a dangerous position.  From digging out rocks miles underground or in an open pit surrounded by machinery bigger than the average home, mining is a fairly dangerous job. However, the industry has grown to be much safer than it was a hundred years ago, or even twenty years ago. Governments around the globe have been implementing safety measures, all with the hopes of minimizing accidents– particularly fatal ones.

Safety nettings prevent mine collapse
Source:University of Exeter Dylan McFarlane

Ontario reaches the magic number: 0.

Take Ontario for instance, where 2016 marked a particularly special achievement.  Not a single Ontario miner lost their life last year, leading the way in safety across the globe.

“[W]e just proved you can get to zero if you do the right things and pay the attention that need to be paid,” Ontario Labour Minister Kevin Flynn said. “For mining it just shows the value of cooperation, collaboration from sides that sometimes don’t work well together and kind of put those differences aside.”

Underground coal mining drill
Source: Peabody Industries

Safety regulations directly relate to decreased fatalities.

Government regulations has been the cornerstone to dropping fatalities. In Ontario, amendments were made to Regulation 854, concerning Mines and Mining plants, where risk assessments and requirements for high hazards have been enhanced as of July 2016. Even countries such as Russia and China are tightening regulations in mining, and South Africa is particularly keen in slashing mining fatalities.

“If you can’t mine safely,” said Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane, “don’t mine at all.”

  1. http://www.timminspress.com/2017/02/17/mining-industry-sets-benchmark-in-safety
  2. http://www.levitt-safety.com/whats-new/mining-amendments-to-improve-mine-safety-take-effect-january-1/

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