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Ebola outbreak highlights importance of effective crisis management

World Coal,

International Research Networks (IRN) claims that the recent Ebola outbreak across Africa highlights the importance of having effective crisis management protocols in place at mining operations.

Security and crisis managers across Africa are on high alert in light of the deadly outbreak of Ebola currently blighting many states in West Africa, along with a growing number of countries in Central and East Africa.

According to IRN, mining companies must carefully consider their duty of care and safety of their employees during an outbreak, principally those with employees from overseas and particularly companies mining in the worst affected countries, such as Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. The Ebola outbreak, which has between 55% – 90% mortality rate, will inevitably hamper production at a number of mines over the coming months. The West African iron ore industry is already struggling under the combined effect of the health emergency and depressed iron ore prices, as are many other mining sectors at present.

Ming giant, Vale, has already endorsed IRN’s position, and will feature panelists at the upcoming Mining Security and Crisis Management Forum 2014, to be held in Cape Town, South Africa.

As yet, the coal mining industry has not been affected by the Ebola outbreak, yet as the virus spreads, it is nonetheless vital that all mining project managers are able to cope with a crisis, should one occur. As the old adage goes: it pays to be prepared.

Written by Sam Dodson

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