Responsible mining companies the world over are moving steadily towards safety Level 9, and Booyco Electronics is at the forefront of fit-for-purpose proximity detection and collision avoidance technologies that comply.
Driven by leading global mining houses, the Earth Moving Equipment Safety Round Table (EMESRT) has been engaging with key original equipment manufacturers to improve the safety of equipment in mining operations. According to Bennie Smith, general manager engineering at Booyco Electronics, the company has developed technology that meets Levels 7, 8 and 9 of EMESRT’s safety best practice guidelines.
While Level 7 alerts a mobile machine operator and a pedestrian when they are close, Level 8 goes beyond this to an advisory function, showing the direction in which the vehicle or pedestrians are moving and advising the operator to slow down or stop.
“Level 9 – currently the highest level of safety – takes it a step further by introducing an intervention engineering control measure,” says Smith. “This automatically instructs the machine – or the vehicle’s onboard control system – to slow down, or to perform a safe or emergency stop.”
He highlights that all mines globally are expected to meet Level 9 safety measures by the end of 2025. However, South Africa is moving faster, and has led the world by adopting the EMESRT guidelines in its latest mine safety regulations. These were expected to become law by the end of 2020, requiring local mines to be compliant.
“Having been developing and adapting proximity detection systems (PDS) for South African conditions since 2006, Booyco Electronics is now a world leader in PDS technology certified to Level 9 safety,” he says. “We have successfully tested all our equipment with the Vehicle Dynamics Group at Gerotek, which is globally recognised for third party testing, verification and certification.”
Boasting the largest footprint of installed PDS systems and technicians in South Africa, Booyco Electronics has seen its equipment applied in surface and underground mines, and in both hard rock and coal applications.
“This has positioned us well to respond to the EMESRT safety best practices for mines to implement by 2025,” says Smith, “As a result, we have been receiving a growing volume of enquiries from across Africa, North and South America, Europe and Australia.