angloamericanBL Premium writes that Anglo American Platinum’s (Amplats’) record performance with zero fatalities in 2019 was no accident. It came from the culmination of an intense focus on changing the mindset of the company’s workforce and rigorous discipline.  

The achievement was all the more remarkable in that the number of deaths at SA’s platinum mines in 2019 surpassed those of the country’s gold mines for the first time.  Fatalities on platinum mines increased to 20 from 12 in 2018. Gold mines accounted for 18 deaths, compared with 40 the year before.  Amplats employs more than 27,000 people, including 3,600 contractors who fall under the company’s intense drive to make its mines safe.  Gordon Smith, executive head technical, safety and sustainability at Amplats, commented:  “We have progressively put in engineering solutions through removing the risk by doing work differently or having different technologies to ultimately eliminate hazards.  But people make choices. So, this journey of ours is about influencing the choices people make at work and day-to-day lives.  It’s hinged on the concept of ‘zero mindsets’, that zero is possible, zero harm, working safely without hurting anyone.”  Many companies adopt a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to the violation of safety rules, which Amplats defines as “simple, non-negotiable standards”.  Anglo American shares safety lessons throughout the group and these are disseminated to the workforce.

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