Gold Fields Ghana Limited (Tarkwa Mine) has installed a Collision Avoidance System (CAS) in its mining fleet to improve safety and prevent equipment damage.
The CAS installation is expected to increase the visibility of workers who work on heavy mining equipment, as well as avoid collisions between equipment and the personnel.
Ing. Kwame Ako, Business Improvement Manager of Gold Fields Ghana Limited (Tarkwa Mine), at the CAS commissioning explained that the system has been installed on all dump-trucks and excavators, as well as some ancillary equipment such as loaders and dozers.
“All personnel working around heavy mining equipment have also been provided with personal alert tags. The system uses GPS to detect personnel and equipment within 25, 18 and 10 metres” he said.
According to him, when there is a person or equipment close to the moving equipment, a signal is sent to the operator and the employee.
“The personal alert tag vibrates and flashes a red light to warn the person who is in close proximity to the moving equipment,” Ing. Ako further explained.
He pointed out that CAS is a more accurate safety tool, which augments the fatigue management system that has been installed on all dump trucks since 2012 to enhance operator safety and reduce equipment damage.
“The fatigue management system prompts dispatchers and control room operators when the operator of equipment is fatigued while working,” he said.
“Although the fatigue management system significantly improved safety and reduced cost associated with equipment damage, the system has been able to allow equipment to human or equipment to equipment interaction,” Ing. Ako added.
Alfred Baku, Executive Vice President and Head of Gold Fields West Africa, noted that CAS was deployed to address the challenge of collisions.
“The collision avoidance system is a robust and precise safety mechanism that will enable us avert injuries and fatalities, as well as damage to our equipment,” he said.
He added that: “We will continue to explore new, innovative ways to improve safety and ensure that employees return home safely to their homes every day. Management of the Tarkwa Mine decided to deploy the CAS to address this gap by adding a more robust and precise safety mechanism to enhance our mining operations. We will continue to explore new, innovative ways to improve safety and ensure that our employees return home to their families safely every day”.
Mr. George Azanu, BCM Project Manager, noted that the system is a life-saving one which guarantees every employee will be notified when they are getting close to a machine.
Seth Okyere with the personal alert tags, which vibrate when a person is in close proximity to moving equipment