Energy Ministry boosts inspections in mines
ANKARA - Anadolu Agency
Turkey's Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources stopped the activities of 1,780 mines since August 2017 as it has increased inspections of the mines with a new model, which is adopted in August, the Ministry announced on Nov. 18.
With the instructions of Minister Berat Albayrak, the first results were started to be taken in the mining inspections, according to the information the Energy Ministry of Turkey provided.
The security risks and deficiencies in the mines were not tolerated in inspections within the scope of "Risk Management Roadmap".
The General Directorate of Mining Affairs (MIGEM), inspected 5,467 mines during this term and 258 coal mines were suspended out of 1,780 mines.
The Ministry applied the penalties of "stopping production or mining activities" in cases where dangerous situations were identified in terms of business activity.
Also, mines without working, opening and property license were penalized.
According to officials of the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources, inspections will continue increasingly in 2018.
It is envisaged that MIGEM will complete more than 6,000 inspections by the end of the year. For 2018, there will be at least 7,000 inspections.
In this context, MIGEM employed 69 new underground mining specialists and commissioned experts to inspect and supervise the registration areas.
Accidents have beset Turkey’s mining industry in the recent years, with the most devastating incident being the death of 301 coal miners in the western district of Soma in May 2014, considered the country’s worst ever industrial accident.
On Oct. 17, six miners were killed and one was injured in a mine collapse in the southeastern province of Şırnak.
On May 30, a collapse occurred in a mine run by a private firm in the Black Sea province of Zonguldak’s Kilimli district.
On June 1, search and rescue teams retrieved the bodies of two workers from a collapsed coal mine in Zonguldak after more than 30 hours, state-run Anadolu Agency reported.
In October 2014, 18 miners died in a flood at a coal mine in the Ermenek district of the Central Anatolian province of Karaman.
In November 2016, 16 workers were killed in a copper mine landslide in the Şirvan district of the southeastern province of Siirt.