Welkom. 2.2.18. The Sibanya mine in the Free State after where close to a 100 miners were trapped under ground since Wednesday due to a power failure at the mine. Picture: Timothy Bernard/ANA

CAPE TOWN - Sibanye-Stillwater has said that two of its workers who were trapped underground on Wednesday at Kloof gold operations in Johannesburg, had died.

The two workers were trapped underground in the early hours of Wednesday at Kloof's Ikamva Shaft following a fall of ground, possibly linked to a nearby seismic event. Rescue personnel were immediately deployed and efforts were made to locate and free the two employees.

"Sibanye-Stillwater regrets to report that two employees were fatally injured during a fall of ground at its Ikamva 4 Shaft, Kloof Operations in Glenharvie at 01:30am on Wednesday 7 February 2017," Sibnaye said in a statement.

Also read: Two mineworkers trapped underground at Sibanye's Ikamva Shaft in SA

"Sibanye-Stillwater expresses their deepest condolences to the deceased employee's family, friends and colleagues. Operations in the affected area have been suspended pending an investigation into the incident by Sibanye-Stillwater management together with the Department of Mineral Resources and other relevant stakeholders."

Located on the far West Rand, some 60km south-west of Johannesburg, the Kloof Operation is a complex of intermediate to ultra-deep-level mines at depths of between 1,300m and 3,350m below surface. 

The Department of Mineral Resources also confirmed that the bodies had been recovered and workers declared dead by paramedics.

"The department will commence with an investigation into the accident once the second worker is found and the shaft has been cleared," the DMR said in its official Twitter page.

Last week, a group of 955 mineworkers were lucky to escape when they were rescued after being trapped underground at Sibanye's Beatrix gold mine in Welkom, Free State, following a power failure at the mine as a result of a severe storm in the area. 

- African News Agency (ANA)