Among other priorities, the dangers of illegal mining will be a highlight at the Pogera Gold Mine, health and safety week, this month.
Occupational Health and Safety Manager James Browning, said blood pressure, sugar level checks, and HIV voluntary testing, and vaccinations, will also be made available to employees.
Mr. Browning said the health and safety activities will be staged at the mine site, scheduled from the 17th to the 30th of March.
Working at a mine site is very hectic; and for this very reason, health and safety, is of paramount concern at the Pogera Gold Mine in the Enga Province.
During its weeklong health and safety week this month, awareness on illegal mining, HIV voluntary testing, vaccinations, blood pressure and sugar level checks will be made available to employees.
Also, the recently introduced Audiometry and Spirometry testing will make up part of the health initiatives component.
There will also be emergency response and hazardous substance management drills, fire extinguishing, fighting skills, and sporting activities, to encourage team work.
Schools will also be involved in conceptualizing safety posters, and essay competitions that carry prizes.
Former National Rugby League and PNG Kumul David Wesley will be on site as well, to promote healthy living initiatives.
He will be conducting coaching clinics for the locals and visit schools in the valley.
Mr. Browning said the level of planning and the safety team’s effort put in this year was more than last year.
A two-hour safety walkathon from the administration field to the operational site, will kick start the weeklong activities.
Barrick Limited is the manager of the Porgera Joint Venture that operates the gold mine in Enga Province.
Ninety two percent of the workforce is Papua New Guineans.
Porgera Gold Mine is the second largest mine in PNG, and is regarded as one of the world's top ten producing gold mines.
In 2009, it produced 572,595 ounces of gold, and 94,764 ounces of silver, and had 2,500 employees, and 500 contractors.
Since it began operating, the mine has produced more than 16 million ounces of gold and almost 3 million ounces of silver, accounting for about 12 percent of Papua New Guinea’s total exports.
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