Concentrating’s Safety Enhancement to Achieve Sustainable Safe Production
14 November 2021
Recent data shows that the Concentrating Division successfully maintained a consistent performance on its year-to-date recordable accident rate from 2020, solidifying its commitment to safety, health and environmental aspects as an essential part of the operations.
In addition to strict safety protocols and safety equipment advancement, enhanced communications and collaboration between crew members was another secret ingredient to the team’s success that has been continuously encouraged at their safety meetings.
“To understand and be aware of your environment is the first step to prevent illnesses or injuries at the workplace,” said Eko Purnomo, Senior Manager-Concentrating Operation. “It is important for every team to discuss any questions or concerns they might have with their supervisor. For example, when there are issues related to FRM on a given day, the safety admin will distribute them to all team members at the end of day shift to be discussed at the safety meeting the next day.”
The team has added several mill materials handling and respiratory safety equipment to maintain continuous improvement in their safety performance.
“When we talk about heavy materials, we specifically refer to the high density and atomic mass of metallic elements of the materials,” Purnomo said. “We always strive to eliminate risks by applying with the most effective control, and one of the good examples of this was the SKYWAY technology that we installed and commissioned in early July to help us improve the safety of relining work.”
The SKYWAY technology allows personnel to perform relining work from the outside of the SAG, keeping workers safe from the risks posed by suspended loads during previously traditional relining activities.
With the plant activities resulting in a large amount of dust, effective dust control becomes another focus for the concentrating team to prevent dust from spreading throughout its expansive facility.
“Exposure to dust in mining and ore processing activities continues to be a major risk to the workers’ health. We cannot underestimate the seriousness of this problem,” Purnomo said. “To address this issue, we have installed foggers at seven points in the mill during the second quarter of 2021.”
The foggers’ dust suppression systems prevent, control, and significantly reduce the amount of dust particles released during the ore processing. Spraying water helps particles stick in the dust and prevent it from spreading.
Corrosion: The Never-ending Battle
While steel remains one of the most durable materials used in the support structures of the mill’s facilities, climate and ore processing activities can cause corrosion, damaging the infrastructure.
After decades supporting 24/7 plant operations, metal structures at the mill facilities are prone to degradation that may cause structural failures impacting production activities. Therefore, a thorough inspection and identification of mill’s infrastructure is essential.
To maintain performance amid the challenging pandemic environment, Purnomo said the Concentrating Division remains engaged in managing risks related to COVID-19 and continues to apply appropriate measures to help protect the health and safety of the team. This includes installing washbasins with running water and soap throughout the mill areas, distributing hand sanitizer, and disinfecting work areas.
“We are glad that these measures have been effective to keep everyone safe at the mill. We also encourage employees to get vaccinated for maximum protection,” Purnomo said.
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