Botswana mining companies have been advised that one way of avoiding accidents in mining operations is to maintain constant communication as this tool is the line of sight.
Product Manager at Becker Electonics, Rick Esterhuizen said at Electra Mining Botswana 2015 that communication can be through vehicle to vehicle or person to person adding that legislation was passed in South Africa in February 2015 which compels warning of machine operators and pedestrian effectively of close proximity to one another.
“The way to avoid accidents is to maintain constant contact and communication underground is very important,” he told a seminar during the three-day exhibition that was held at Fairground in Gaborone.
“Ultimately, communication is a tool to make you save underground”. Botswana mining industry was hit by a series of accidents in the recent past in which miners and contractors lost their lives with findings showing that communication and due care was not followed.
Esterhuizen said the three mediums of communication in the modern mining are the Wi-Fi, fibre optic and traditional copper wires. He however warned that there should be continuous upgrades, maintenance and expansion.
“You can have the best communication equipment in the world, but if do not check it is working, then it does not mean anything,” he said.
He added that there is a need to check the functionality of the personal and vehicle functionality all the times, adding that if communication is not effective the potential of the mine cannot be realised.
The Becker Group of Companies, which was established in South Africa in 1983, comprises various divisions which include mining equipment – namely shaft safety, transport and communication – pumps, electronics, underground and tunnel supports, as well as lifting and maintenance equipment.
The Electra Mining Botswana 2015 is being held from September 1-3 and a wide range of products and services related to mining, industrial engineering and manufacturing, electrical engineering, power generation, materials handling, safety, health and environment, machines tools and construction, amongst others are on display.