A geologist attached to the Troy Resources mining operations at Karouni, Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni) was on Tuesday morning killed after the mining pit in which he was working collapsed.
Dead is 33-year-old Ryan Taylor of Lot 85 Lamaha Street, Alberttown, Georgetown.
Based on reports received, Taylor and three others were working on the construction of a “bench” in a mining pit, when there was a slippage, which allegedly resulted in him falling and being covered.
Guyana Times understands that it took some time to get Taylor from under the rubbles and by the time he was pulled, it was too late. His body was transported to the Lyken’s Funeral Home awaiting a Post-Mortem.
Troy Resources has since confirmed that the accident occurred around 02:25h on the night shift, where a geologist was standing above an excavated working face when the 3m embankment he was standing on collapsed and he suffered fatal injuries as a consequence.
“We are deeply saddened by the tragic news and our heartfelt and sincerest condolences go to the family, friends and colleagues of our employee. We always make every effort to ensure the wellbeing of all of our people and this incident brings home the need for upmost vigilance in safety at all times. The company is in close contact with the family of the employee and is providing full support to their family at this time of loss”, Troy Managing Director Ken Nilsson stated.
Nilsson further stated that mining operations at Karouni, Cuyuni have currently been temporarily suspended.
“The company intends to bring a grief counsellor to help our employees cope with this tragic loss. There will be a full investigation by the company and the relevant authorities,” a release from the company stated.
However, in light of the incident, Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman has since instructed the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC) to begin making the necessary preparations for the thorough investigation of the matter.
A report is expected to be compiled and submitted upon completion. In the interim, all work in the area of construction has been ordered ceased, pending the investigation.
Nevertheless, the Natural Resources Ministry urges miners and companies to exercise extreme care when carrying out these operations.
The Ministry further urges all involved in the sector to always be in compliance, to evade any risks and fatalities as the above.
Meanwhile, Trotman and staff of the Natural Resources Ministry express sincerest condolences to the relatives and friends of Ryan Taylor.
“May the soul of Ryan Taylor rest in peace and may his relatives and friends be comforted by the memories he has left”, the Ministry stated in a release. Over the years, several persons have lost their lives in mining pit accidents.
In light of the tragic death of the young man, the People’s United and General Workers Union (PU&GWU) believes the incident is one too many and is pursuing immediate action from all quarters to investigate the circumstances causing this death— with a view to instituting preventative measures that would protect workers in similar circumstances.
“Ryan Taylor was not a member of the union; however, as a worker subjected to the same conditions of labour as all others, his death highlights the importance of health and safety in the workplace. He has left to mourn three minor children, ages five, nine and 12,” the Union in a release stated.
It further stated that this industrial death has robbed Taylor’s children the opportunity of growing into adulthood with him being there to father them.
“His home circle has lost a breadwinner. Accidents do not happen, they are caused; therefore, they are preventable. The worst impact is loss of life”.
As such, PU&GWU has called for an inquest consistent with the Occupational Safety and Health Act.
“This industrial death is even more impacting, given the fact that last year, the Union expressed concerns via engagement with the Occupation Health and Safety Department in the Ministry of Social Protection and the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission about correcting perceived unsafe practices”.
In addition, the Union calls for an investigation into the mining operations.
It stated that management responded to the Union’s representation by refusing to engage with the Union over a considerable period of time.
“This relationship remains strained unto today. The company has since then even denied the Union visitation rights to its plant and mines”.
PU&GWU extends its deepest condolences to the family, loved ones and colleagues of Ryan Taylor.