Implats’ shaft lift accident death toll increases to 13

Another mineworker has lost his life following a shaft lift accident at the Impala Platinum (Implats) a week ago, taking the death toll to 13.

The employee succumbed to his injuries after being admitted to the hospital together with more than 70 other workers following the accident on Monday last week.

“Implats has offered its condolences to and remains in close contact with his family,” said Johan Theron, spokesperson for the company, said late on Monday.

“Yesterday’s [Sunday] fatality brings to 13 the number of employees who have passed on following the 11 Shaft accident.

“As of this morning, a total of 23 employees have been discharged from hospital. Of the 50 employees who remain in hospital, eight are in critical care.

“In collaboration with the families of affected employees, Implats has set aside Wednesday, 6 December 2023, as a day of remembrance for employees who have been impacted by this tragic event”.

Memorial service

The company also announced that a memorial service will take place at Impala Rustenburg on Wednesday to honour the memory of the deceased workers and to pray for those those who were injured.

Access to the venue, which has a capacity of 15 000 people, will be strictly controlled.

“A memorial service will be held at Impala Rustenburg to allow for our employees to come together to honour the memory of our lost, injured and affected colleagues.

“In line with the wishes of the families involved, Implats will only release the names of our deceased colleagues on the day of the memorial service,” said Theron.

The company said last week that the 11 shaft personnel conveyance was hoisting employees to the surface at the end of their shift.

At 4.54pm on Monday, said the mining company, the conveyance unexpectedly started descending.

“Its rapid descent was stopped by the conveyance counterweight becoming trapped by the jack catches,” said Implats CEO Nico Muller at the time.

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