Fatal Accident at Gold Fields South Deep Mine
02 May 2008
Murray & Roberts Holdings Limited ("Murray & Roberts") (JSE: MUR) regrets to confirm that eight of its employees died tragically in a shaft accident on 1 May 2008 when a personnel cage in which they were being transported at about 2880 metres underground at South Deep Gold Mine west of Johannesburg, fell almost 60 metres. All nine occupants of the cage, including an employee of the mine itself, died instantly in the accident.
Murray & Roberts Group Chief Executive Brian Bruce said this morning "I and my executive team are deeply shocked by this tragedy. Our sympathy and condolences go out to the families, friends and colleagues of those who died." He confirmed that the deceased employees worked for Murray & Roberts Cementation Limited, a 80% held subsidiary of Murray & Roberts, and formed part of a development team contracted to the mine.
"The management of Murray & Roberts Cementation immediately mobilised its disaster response capabilities on learning of the accident and all next of kin had been engaged and informed of the tragic consequences of the accident by that evening" he said.
Murray & Roberts is not in a position to comment on the nature or cause of the accident. The site is under management and control of Gold Fields, and the Department of Minerals and Energy will conduct a formal enquiry into the accident.
"Safety is a priority in Murray & Roberts and great strides have been made in significantly improving the company's safety record and accident statistics as it has grown over the past number of years" he said. "However, much still needs to be done to ensure zero harm to our people and the environment, as permanent disablement and death by industrial accident should not be accepted as a statistical probability."
For further information contact:
|Brian Bruce |
Group Chief Executive
Tel: +27 (0)11 456 6281
|Gold Fields Limited|
+27 (0)11 411 1112
+27 (0)82 667 7203
Murray & Roberts is South Africa's leading engineering, contracting and construction services company, with a primary focus on the resources-driven construction markets in industry & mining, oil & gas and power & energy in Africa, Middle East, Southeast Asia, Australasia and North America. The company offers civil, mechanical, electrical, mining and process engineering; general building and construction; materials supply and services to the construction industry; and management of concession operations.
Murray & Roberts employs about 40000 people, about 15000 of whom work in underground related mining operations in South Africa, Australia and Canada.