– receiving treatment at Kwakwani Hospital for injuries
TWO workers of the RUSAL-owned Bauxite Company of Guyana (BCGI) up to late Sunday evening remained hospitalised at the Kwakwani Hospital after suffering electric shocks while on duty around 16:00hrs on Saturday; and some workers are unhappy with the manner in which management dealt with the matter.
General Secretary of the Guyana Bauxite and General Workers’ Union (GB&GWU), Lincoln Lewis, said though the incident was reported to the union, they are still investigating and verifying information, after which the union would be better equipped to comment on the issue.
Twenty-five- year-old Pump Operator Glendon Tinnaman, a father of one, was working on a pump in a river in the Kurubuka mines, when he and another employee were shocked.
“Right now he at the hospital. I call he phone this afternoon and he tell me he at the hospital taking saline. According to what he told me, he feeling numbness and pain in his shoulder and legs. Both of them hospitalised,” Tinnaman’s father, Derrick Frank, relayed to the Guyana Chronicle on Sunday evening in a telephone interview.
He say it is expected that Tinnaman would be well enough to be discharged from the hospital by Monday.
Tinnaman and the other employee were shocked after another employee turned on the electricity without being cleared to do so.
“They had some electric pumps that we normally use. So they were changing a discharge line for the pump and he went in the water to connect the discharge and the guy, one of them electricians, put on the current same time. He supposed to inform we before he put on the current, but he didn’t inform we he just go and turn it on,” Frank said
It was the aftermath of the incident, and behaviour of the mines supervisor on site, that some of the staff noted they were not entirely pleased with, according to reports.
According to Frank, who also works at BCGI and was present during the incident, the Mines Supervisor on site, a Russian, did not attempt to check on the workers after they came out of the river
The two workers were made to wait until a bus came at 18:00hrs to take the workers out of the mines, he says.
“They could’ve called the ambulance but nobody didn’t really show no interest. The people in authority was [sic] supposed to do it. As far as I concern he (supervisor) didn’t really respond, the response wasn’t worthwhile, he just stand up and look around. He don’t really know English but at least he could’ve taken them out to the medical centre. They could’ve showed more interest in the worker,” he said.
The injured workers were first attended to at the Aroiama Health Centre before they were transferred on Sunday to the Kwakwani Hospital, where they taken by a Safety Officer of the company.
Chief Occupational Health and Safety Officer, Gweneth King, noted that when an industrial accident occurs, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Department, the company has up to four days to report non-fatal accidents, while fatal accidents require reporting within 24 hours.