Mining and metals companies could achieve a step change in their safety records while also significantly improving productivity by incorporating inexpensive sensors and analytics tools into their existing systems, an executive at privately-held US Software Company OSIsoft says.
Wearables are starting to change the way people live by providing them with accurate, up-to-date information about their health. The same will be true in mining. With mining and milling operations across the world subject to increasingly stringent health and safety laws, and often holding a precarious social license to operate, the cost of not knowing or acting quickly to limit lost-time injuries and in worst-case scenarios death are significant, says
If you improve safety, you will improve your costs, that’s for sure,” he adds, noting the myriad ways lax safety can weigh on a company’s bottom line. “The health and safety tax that you’re paying with the authorities, having an employee you are paying that’s not working is not very good, having to replace the employee, hiring another one that needs to be trained, and while you’re training that person you could be losing money.” Companies with poor safety or environmental records will also struggle to retain existing workers and recruit employees, win approval for expansion or otherwise increase production, he says. It is an issue executives know about, but not all have embraced the technology to tackle it yet.
Montreal-based Martin Provencher, industry principal for mining, metals and materials at OSIsoft. OSIsoft’s PI System already provides real-time operational data for many of the world’s largest mining companies, and also brings in a significant portion of the San Leandro, Californiabased Company’s revenue from oil and gas companies and utilities.
While corporate social responsibility has been a catchphrase of mining industry annual reports for years now, actually taking the steps required to strengthen a company’s social license to operate has taken longer to take hold.
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