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Implats Suspends Operations at Marula after Detecting Postive COVID-19 Cases

Mining News - Published on Mon, 18 May 2020

Image Source: Implats Coronavirus Lockdown
Implats confirmed that following stringent and comprehensive screening, testing and tracing protocols, a cluster of positive COVID-19 cases has been detected at and around its Marula operation in Limpopo province. It said “Implats has identified 19 positive cases during the week, all of them asymptomatic. Of these cases, 14 were identified as the result of proactive testing of employees returning to work. None of these employees had started work at the mine. Of the remaining five, one case was identified as a primary contact and the remaining four were identified through contact tracing. Two of the active cases had recently returned from the Eastern Cape. Significantly, 17 of the confirmed cases reside locally, suggesting the prevalence of COVID-19 among local communities is far higher than the company’s initial estimates had indicated.”

It was also confirmed that these cases included a local health provider and four mine- employed health providers working at the mine clinic. This facility was immediately closed for sterilisation and testing of medical staff and all primary contacts.

Every person who tested positive was immediately isolated to prevent the further spread of the virus and has been isolated at the mine’s isolation site, at government designated facilities or at home as per government protocols. Department of Health officials visited patients at our quarantine site this morning, 16 May 2020.

Marula currently works rotational shift cycles, with two teams alternating a week at work and a week off. Marula will not recall workers due to report for duty next week, to enable it to first complete all relevant health and safety protocols, including: verifying test results, sanitising identified high-risk areas, conducting further contact tracing and testing procedures as required, and placing people in isolation and quarantine based on the outcome of the screening and testing results.

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Posted By : Yogender Pancholi on Mon, 18 May 2020
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