Sibanye-Stillwater's Masakhane mine in Driefontein where four workers died following a seismic event. Picture: Mathews Baloyi/ANA

Driefontein - All 13 Sibanye-Stillwater employees who were trapped underground at its Masakhane mine, Driefontein operations near Carletonville on Gauteng’s West Rand have now been recovered by mine rescue personnel, the company said on Saturday.

"Regrettably, the last three employees who were recovered passed away from their injuries, bringing the total number of fatalities as a result of the seismic event, to seven," Sibanye-Stillwater said in a statement.

The six employees who were successfully rescued were in a stable condition in hospital. The families of the employees had been contacted and were receiving necessary support and counselling.

Read: 13 miners trapped underground at Sibanye-Stillwater’s Masakhane mine

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"The board and management of Sibanye-Stillwater wishes to express its sincere condolences to friends and family of the deceased employees and those impacted by this tragic event. A thorough investigation by management and the department of mineral resources (DMR) and other stakeholders will be performed and all efforts will be made to ensure to prevent incidents of this nature occurring in future.

"We thank everyone involved in the rescue operations, especially the mine rescue teams and our own employees, who have worked tirelessly for the last two-and-a-half days to rescue our colleagues under extremely challenging conditions, Sibanye-Stillwater said.

On Friday, Sibanye-Stillwater spokesman James Wellsted said a total of 13 people were initially trapped after the seismic event on Thursday night. 

African News Agency/ANA