Cape Town – One of the survivors of a mining accident that claimed 13 lives at the Impala Platinum mine in Rustenburg, North West, Zaphalala Mzo, has reportedly expressed reluctance to return to underground work due to the traumatic incident.
According to Times Live, Mzo, 53, who suffered a leg injury, said that if the mining company doesn’t offer him a surface job, he would consider returning home.
“I don’t think I will ever go underground, but anyway my leg is hurt. If they don’t have anywhere I can work besides underground, it will be better if I go home,” the report quoted the father of three from Qumbu in the Eastern Cape as saying.
He recounted the events of the accident on November 27, describing how the lift they were in malfunctioned, free-falling and resulting in injuries.
Impala Platinum said the “serious accident” happened as employees were leaving one of the shafts at the end of their shift, AFP reported.
The cage was carrying 86 mineworkers.
“Our hearts are heavy for the lives lost and the individuals affected by this devastating accident,” Impala Platinum’s (Implats) CEO, Nico Muller, said in a statement.
Rescue operations resulted in 11 deaths, with 10 individuals in critical condition and others sustaining minor injuries.
The incident has sparked concerns about worker safety in the mining industry, prompting the Mineral Resources Minister to acknowledge it as a setback in the government’s push for zero harm in mining, EWN reported.
Compiled by Betha Madhomu