Protea Chemicals Namibia and other key stakeholders including Dundee Precious Metals Tsumeb (DPMT) will conduct the first live Incident Response drill between Swakopmund and Walvisbay on Monday, 18 January 2016. The drill is to ensure safe transportation of Sulphuric Acid produced by Dundee via road and rail to consumers in Namibia.
“In order for Emergency Services to be well prepared, especially where sulphuric acid is involved, it is essential that all emergency services are equipped and trained to respond in the very unlikely event of an incident. In order to achieve this, incident response drills have to be conducted, hence the scheduling of the full scale ER drills,” said Michael Josten Business Development Manager at Protea Mining Chemicals. He emphasized that the announcement of the location and dates of the scheduled drills is to inform the public that should they see activity and vehicles in the areas that this is simply a drill and test of our response and preparedness.
A Sulphuric Acid training campaign was hosted along the route and included emergency services of the following towns:
In order to include all ER services along the route, two ER drills have been scheduled. The first drill will occur next week Monday, 18th January 2016, half way between Swakopmund and Walvis Bay on route D1984 behind dune 7. The second drill will occur on Friday 22 January 2016 closer to Tsumeb. However the exact location must still be confirmed for the second drill.
“The health and safety of our employees and local communities are paramount and enable us to be in business. Safety can never be compromised and therefore this incident drill is of much value and priority to us as a company,” said Acting General Manager, Thinus Loftie-Eaton.
Incident drill Coordinator at Protea Chemicals Namibia, Karika Laas said the objectives of the drill, is to test the effectiveness of the sulphuric acid response plan, to evaluate the preparedness for a sulphuric acid transport incident to identify opportunities for improvement in the current response plan.
She further alluded to the first planning meetings with all stakeholders that were hosted in September 2015. Laas expressed her expectations of the drills to be successful and actions contained in the ER plan to have been rehearsed. She also mentioned the drill will help identify opportunities for improvement in the response plan and for all stakeholders to be better prepared.