Challenges of Mines Rescue in Expanding Mine Operations


Kent Armstrong, Draeger Safety Canada Limited

As mines are constantly growing and expanding so do the challenges for emergency response teams. They have to keep up with the pace that is set by current and future production techniques. Although mines have now reached depths of several kilometers and their dimensions and complexity are of an entire city, mines rescue still must be able to reach the most remote areas within the mine in a swift and safe manner. The duration of breathing apparatus and physical human capabilities are natural limitations. Therefore alternative methods have to be explored to extend the time under oxygen for mine rescue teams without putting additional stress on the team members. To address this global trend, Dräger, Goldcorp and Paus have partnered together to develop a mine rescue vehicle that allows mines rescue teams to travel for an extended period of time in a contaminated atmosphere without the use of their breathing apparatus, thus extending the range of their mission. By application of current available techniques the safe expansion of production in a mine can be ensured by giving mines rescue teams the capabilities to respond to accidents in a safer and faster way.