Mineworker dies in explosion

2011-07-13 21:40
Johannesburg - A mineworker died at Goldfield's Beatrix mine in the Free State on Wednesday, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) said.

"[A] rockdrill operator died when he drilled into a misfire which then caused an explosion. A winch driver has been wounded in the process," said spokesperson Lesiba Seshoka.

A misfire is when a drill hole filled with explosives fails to explode.

Another mineworker died in a rock fall at Harmony Gold's Tshepong mine in the Free State on Tuesday.

Wednesday's incident brought the total number of mineworkers killed while on duty to 70 this year.

Seshoka said union members will be marching to the Chamber of Mines' office on Hollard Street, Marshalltown, in Johannesburg on Saturday to hand over a memorandum demanding that safety must be improved in mines.

He called on the mine industry to "put people before profits".

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