Perth company GeoMoby says it received a favourable response from participants following the use of its technology in this month’s underground mine emergency response competition in the Goldfields.
GeoMoby’s technology is designed to track the location of mine workers in real-time, improving the ability of companies to keep their staff safe.
The company said its trackers and sensors were installed in FMR Investments’ Gordon Sirdar mine 55km north-east of Kalgoorlie-Boulder, which hosted the competition on November 4-5.
GeoMoby director Mathieu Paul said the company’s green “lunchbox” nodes were placed throughout the mine in less than 30 minutes across six levels, and participants carried tags.
“At the start of the competition, some of the participants had not heard of GeoMoby, and our Bluetooth connectivity network, and many were sceptical, but all involved were soon constantly watching our real-time screen with ‘live’ action,” he said.
“With GeoMoby, you are able to accurately see every person and vehicle — across an underground mine — in an instant.
“It’s not theory, it’s reality.”
FMR Investments’ Gordon Sirdar foreman and rescue team captain Anthony Scharf said it was difficult in underground situations to accurately know exactly where miners were all the time.
“This competition has shown us, for the first time, we have the ability to see our people operating in real-time,” he said.
FMR Investments general manager of operations John Farr said: “If GeoMoby can deliver even half of what they say this weekend, it’s a total game changer.”
“Never before have we had this kind of visibility for our underground operations,” he said.
A record 14 emergency response crews put their skills to the test at this year’s event in disciplines including team skills, first aid, rope rescue, breathing apparatus skills, search and rescue, and theory.
The team from AngloGold Ashanti’s Tropicana goldmine was crowned the best overall team, and recorded the best score during the team skills, first aid and rope-rescue events.
FMR Investments’ team was second — it won the theory event — while Northern Star Resources’ KCGM team came third.
AngloGold Ashanti’s Sunrise Dam team came in fourth place overall and recorded the highest score in the fire discipline.