The 49 fatalities reported in the industry in 2022 represent an improvement of 34% on the 74 deaths in 2021. These are the lowest number of annual fatalities in the industry’s recorded history. However, we emphasise that our goal is zero fatalities, and we will not be satisfied until this goal is sustainably reached.
The platinum sector reported the highest number of fatalities with 18 in 2022, compared with 21 in 2021 (14% reduction). The gold sector reported 15 fatalities compared with 30 during 2021 (50% reduction). The coal sector recorded six fatalities, compared with 10 in 2021 (40% reduction) and the other commodities (zinc, dolerite, diamond, iron ore, chrome, copper, sand and manganese) reported 10 fatalities, compared with 13 fatalities in 2021 (23% reduction).
There are encouraging signs that initiatives like the Fall of Ground Action Plan (FOGAP) adopted by the Minerals Council Board and CEO Zero Harm Forum in July 2021 may be contributing to the reduction in fatalities. In 2022, there were six fall of ground-related fatalities, a 73% reduction from the 22 fatalities in 2021.
Transport and mining-related accidents, of which there were 17, were the cause of the largest number of fatalities (this includes fatalities emanating from rail-bound, trackless mobile machinery and winches). “General” accidents were the next highest contributor to overall fatalities with 16 fatalities recorded in 2022 (this includes mud rushes, struck by objects, fires, explosives, electricity, conveyances, etc.).
There was a significant reduction in fatalities in 2022 to a record low of 49 in 2022 (2021: 74).