S.Africa’s Harmony Gold reports two fatalities at Kusasalethu mine

(Reuters) – Harmony Gold, South Africa’s top gold producer by output, on Wednesday reported two deaths at its Kusasalethu mine, 90 km (55.92 miles)west of Johannesburg.

The work area has been temporarily closed pending an internal investigation, Harmony said.

“Harmony Gold Mining Company regrets to announce that two employees tragically lost their lives at its Kusasalethu mine, following a fall of ground incident caused by a seismic event on Tuesday, 5 September 2023,” the miner said in a statement.

The company recorded six fatalities in its financial year which ended on June 30. It registered 13 deaths in the previous financial year.

On Tuesday, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), South Africa’s biggest mineworkers union, said the mining sector had recorded 27 fatal accidents so far this year, with gold miners accounting for 15 of them.

In 2022, South Africa recorded 49 mine-related deaths, its safest year on record, down from 7 fatalities in 2021.

(Reporting by Nelson Banya; Editing by Tomasz Janowski)