South Africa's biggest mineworkers union said on Friday that a worker died on Thursday at a mine run by Impala Platinum when an air pipe fell on him, leading to the closure of shaft No. 14.
The Department of Minerals and Energy issued a section 54 notice to the company, which is a directive to close the affected mining area or shaft, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) said in a statement.
Some 170 mineworkers died last year in various incidents in South Africa, which was a decline of 23 percent compared to 221 deaths in the previous year.
Two workers have died so far this year, the NUM said.
(Reporting by James Macharia)
(c) Reuters 2009. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content, including by caching, framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters and the Reuters sphere logo are registered trademarks and trademarks of the Reuters group of companies around the world.