Lesedi Annual Safety Review 2009

 Annual Report to all stakeholders on Health and Safety for the year July 2008 to June 2009.

 Summary

• 4 lost time accidents were reported during the year

• 114 shifts were lost as a result of these accidents.

• DIFR (Disabling Injury Frequency Rate) = 0.94

• Number of employees  339

• Man hours worked 850 000

• Operating machines 120.

• 55% improvement in the Lost Time Injury Frequency Rate.


The year under review represents the company’s sixth full year of operations. 

The previous year’s disastrous result of 9 lost shift accidents was improved upon and 4 lost shift accidents were recorded during the period under review. This is a substantial decrease over last year (55%).

Accidents during the 2009 operational year

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During the period under review Lesedi drilling operated on the following mines/shafts:

Harmony: Tshepong, Bambanani, Phakisa, Joel, Doornkop, Cooke 1, 2, 3 Anglogold Ashanti Moab Khotsong, Gt Noligwa ARM/Impala, Two Rivers, Anglo Platinum. Boschfontein, Townlands, Turffontein, Brakspruit, PMC. Palabora, 

2008-2009 Review

It is important to classify the lost shift accidents. The table below achieves this.

Accidents July 2008- June 2009

Pulling and Lowering Rods

The lost shift accidents relating to the rods descending out of holes in an uncontrolled fashion resulted in finger amputations. These could just have easily been fatal accidents. As can be seen from the table we had two such incidents during the year under review and both of these accidents resulted in finger amputations. Unfortunately these severe accidents were caused by operators ignoring safety procedures. The roll out of the new face clamps with the “rod catcher device” had not reached the machines where the amputations took place but the completion of the roll out should prevent this type of accident.

Drilling Operations

2 Accidents happened in this area of operations. Both injuries occurred as a result of avoidable incidents. The bumping of an elbow against a sharp rock in the sidewall is unfortunate and could have been prevented by greater care and attention. The second accident, that of starting a machine before the chuck spanner had been removed from the chuck is much more serious and could easily have proved fatal.


Trends 2004 - 2009

The table below shows the trends in our safety failures over the last 5 years. We had a magnificent year in 2005-2006 where we had no lost time accidents. The trend was unfailingly positive since the rather poor years of 2003-2005. However we had two lost time accidents during the 2007 year and then a massive deterioration last year where 9 lost time accidents occurred. The year under review had 55% fewer incidents and the severity of the accidents reduced by 64% but it is still a concern that rods falling out of an up hole persist despite a high level of attention being focused on eliminating these causes of accidents.

Lost Shift Trends

2004-2005   2005-2006   2006-2007    2007-2008   2008-2009

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A quick analysis of the last five years reveals the fact that there can be no doubt that the handling of rods is a major source of accidents and loss. The year ending 2005 had 2 incidents recorded and the severity of 140m lost shifts was extremely high. In 2006 no accidents were recorded but in 2007, a pulling and lowering of rods lost time accident was recorded as was an accident with core sample handling during drilling. The 2008 statistics record two amputations as a result of pulling rods and the 2009 year repeated this although the severity of the incidents was lower. This is unacceptable as it shows us that the employed technology and its day to day use is not good enough to safeguard a workers life or prevent serious injury.

We have modified our face clamps to try and eliminate injury and a new system of pulling and lowering will help a lot but vigilance in this area is vital.

Analysis of Planned Task Observations 2009

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Testing for the presence of methane gas is a vital aspect of a diamond driller’s responsibilities and an accident here produces the highest level of loss possible. A 12% PTO failure rate in this area was experienced last year but this has dropped by half to 6% during the year under review. The fact that the number of observations has increased by 70% since last year is also satisfying.

Given that pulling rods also has a high accident potential it is of concern that non conformances have remained static at around 12% of observations. Observations have increased by 40% in this vital area The roll out of the new rod catcher attached to the face clamp will also have introduced a new technology which increased the opportunity for non conformance and the need for a greater level of observations. This is also underlined by the 60% increase in observations of face clamp operations. This aspect of our work also recorded a 12% non conformance rate.

The overall failure rate on all task observations was over 8% in 2009 which is a good improvement on the 15% recorded last year. 

As always a risk map has been included (below) so that an interested reader can gauge the severity of the risk for any given work activity.

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The DIFR (disabling injury frequency rate) for 2008 – 2009 is:  0.94

The calculation is performed thus: LTI X 200 000/Total Man hours

DIFR six year trend

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It is satisfying that there was a large improvement in the DIFR to below 1 but our goal for the year was to be below 0.5.

The Company response to growth, accidents and incidents during the year.

1.The roll out of face clamp modification to include the gripper box to catch rods falling out of a hole in an uncontrolled fashion was completed during the year.

 2.Our full time training officer will continues to do retraining at all of Lesedi’s contracts. Only focused training is going to achieve a 0.00 LTIF rate.

3.Zero tolerance will be shown towards workers who do not work according to safe work procedures. 

Achievement of objectives for the year

1.We did not meet our objective of a 0.5 DIFR during the year, although we managed a great improvement.

2.We started work on our OSHAS programme which should lead to certification by year end.

3.Our silencer programme was completed. Every Lesedi machine is equipped with a silencer.


Planning and Objectives for 2009 – 2010

1.We must keep our DIFR below 0.5

2.By implementing the Marsh audit findings and our own self audits we shall obtain OHSAS 18001 before year end.

3.Our training strategy must result in the production of training manuals and lesson plans for the work that we do.

4.A survey of the noise levels of our machines must be undertaken and published before year end.


Gordon Hogan

Chief Operating Officer

10th August 2009

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