Night ban hurting mines

Tue, 20 Dec 2016 09:16:59 +0000

 

By Sandra Machima

MINING companies have complained that the newly introduced Statutory Instrument (SI) 76 of 2016 has started hampering mining operations.

First Quantum Minerals (FQM) has since called on government to consider lifting the night driving ban on Copper trucks because the recent Statutory Instrument (SI) 76 of 2016 has started hampering mining operations.

And government has announced that it is considering reviewing the Statutory Instrument (SI) 76 of 2016 that has banned night driving by public service vehicles (PSVs) including trucks carrying copper to and from the mines, Transport and Communications Minister Brian Mushimba has announced.

FQM head of government affairs John Gladston has revealed that the mining operations had been negatively affected after the SI 76 of 2016 was effected.

“Statutory Instrument (SI) 76 constrains the movement of any freight or goods vehicles from travelling between 2100hrs and 0500hrs. And as it stands this regulation is damaging the economic viability of the mining sector,” Mr Gladston said.

Mr Gladston however said the Government’s willingness to take swift and decisive action to amend the SI 76 and give trucks servicing the mining industry exemption was welcome.

And Mr Mushimba said the concerns raised by the mines over SI 76 of 2016 that has constrained the movement of freight for the mines and that it was hampering mining operations was being reconsidered.

Mr Mushimba told the Daily Nation in an interview that Government had received petitions from the mining sector and that it would continue to roll out other initiatives while considering other options and alternatives.

He said his office would in the next two weeks respond to the concerns raised by the mining sector, stating that the night ban could be lifted in the next two weeks.

Mr Mushimba explained that it was the Government’s duty to ensure they implemented road safety, hence the SI 76 of 2016 that was signed into law a few weeks ago which related to banning of night driving of PSVs between 2100 hours and 05:00 hours.

He said the Government was considering multiple SIs to move certain percentage of bulk and heavy cargo off the roads to further improve safety on the roads.

However statistics indicated that 68 percent of the accidents that happened at night involved Public Service Vehicles (PSV) travelling during certain hours of the night.

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