Two Gold Fields (NYSE, JSE: GFI) workers lost their lives Thursday during a ground fall Thursday in shaft four at the Kloof mine.

The Department of Minerals and Energy ordered the company to stop activity at the rest of Kloof in order to carry out remedial work in working places before it reports back to the mine inspector who could lift the order Friday.   

Two workers lost their lives around 02:17am Thursday when ground fell in shaft four as they were cleaning in a stope about 3,000m below the ground.

Gold Fields spokesperson Andrew Davidson said the fatalities at Kloof's four shaft took place just after the company reached one million fatality free shifts at the mine yesterday and was a tragedy. 

He said shaft four would probably not be back in production Friday as work here has been delayed by the inspection and no blasting took place Thursday, while the resumption of production at the rest of Kloof would depend on the inspector's order.

He said the rest of the mine did carry out blasting work this morning.

The serving of a section 54 notice instructing mines to halt production at a mine or section of a mine under the Mine Health and Safety act appears to become more common place in South Africa as the department attempts to step up safety at mines.

Gold Fields confirmed its operations have undergone the presidential safety audit that was launched in the country. Its results are yet to be released. 

The company is continuing its independent audit of all operations to establish if all mining areas are safe for work.

Gold Fields estimated it lost 20kg (706 ounces) of gold Thursday from the shaft.