“An International Review of the Use and Retirement of the Wire Ropes used in Mine Hoisting”


In early 2000, CANMET-MMSL was engaged by the Ontario Ministry of Labour to conduct an international study of the practices, in several key mining jurisdictions, of determining the criteria that are used to decide when the wire ropes used in mine hoisting are to be retired from service. Subsequently, the writer visited key officials and institutions in Canada, the USA, the Republic of South Africa, the United Kingdom, Germany and Poland. Material from the Australian province of New South Wales and Hungary was also included. The report that resulted included, among other sections; (1) the history of wire rope and trends in manufacturing technology; (2) a review of mine hoisting practices; (3) the requirements as regards safety factors; (4) a review of the players and the inspection practices; (5) the criteria for rope replacement; (6) a look into the future to outline the developments that could take place in both hoisting and rope inspection practices in Canada; (7) recommendations. Subsequently, the report was issued as a book by OMOL, and as a CD-ROM by the Mining and Mineral Sciences Laboratories, Natural Resources Canada.. In this paper the author presents the key findings and the recommendations made in the study.