On 21 December 2017 around fifty MMG LXML Sepon employees and contractors joined hands for an unexploded ordinance (UXO) awareness day. The purpose was to raise awareness around UXO hazards and demonstrate how our highly skilled UXO clearance team make work areas and local communities safer. Without clearing UXO, no mining activity could safely take place at Sepon.
Lao PDR is the most heavily bombed country per capita in the world. Approximately 260 million bombs were dropped on between 1964 and 1973. Of these, around 80 million did not explode, leaving a deadly legacy to the life of surrounding citizens. UXO continues to claim lives and cause injuries in the Lao PDR every year.
Since operations commenced, LXML has cleared approximately 7,500 hectares, destroying 58,500 unexploded ordnances. LXML is cooperating closely with the Lao Ministry of Defence to build local capacity in raising UXO clearance techniques to meet international standards.
Participants conducted exercises identifying UXO and the danger they present. LXML employees were reminded of colour coding and markers used to identify the UXO cleared or un-cleared areas, and shown demonstrations of different types of UXO and detection equipment. Prizes were awarded to the awareness participants for their best answers in a quiz about UXO activities.
LXML’s UXO team consistently champion ‘Think Safety First’ due to the unique hazards associated with their work and how it impacts on operations. We plan to host more UXO awareness events in the next six months. The UXO safety message is very important to everyone, especially when we pass it on to family and friends so the community is aware of the UXO hazards and know that expert advice is available at Sepon.
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LXML UXO team, employees, and contractors at the UXO Awareness Day in Sepon Mine, Vilabouly District, Savannakhet Province on 21 December 2017.
Some of the UXO discovered in Sepon Mine.
Read this Media Release in Lao.