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CAS - Increasing awareness and saving lives

Safety is key in mining. With CAS, a high-end safety system, Epiroc aims to increase awareness and save lives. Schalk Janse van Rensburg, General Manager at Mernok, owned by Epiroc, has been working closely with the industry to develop a solution.

Describe the main purpose of the system and how it works.

Schalk Janse van Rensburg General Manager, Mernok, owned by Epiroc

“CAS stands for Collision Avoidance System, and the goal is to detect people and vehicles around equipped machines. The system comprises a control unit, an HMI (Human Machine Interface) and several different sensors that will detect equipped pedestrians, as well as equipped vehicles when they are within the defined range of the system. Three levels of reaction (as established by EMERST) are possible with the proven and tested solution: level 7 is an audible and visual warning, level 8 is advisory, and level 9 is intervention that will slow and stop the vehicle if the operator does not react to the first two levels. This last level has been a legal requirement in South Africa since January 2023.”

Have you encountered any specific challenges during implementation?

“The technology that has come together to develop the CAS solution is robust and field-tested. However, this is only one step in successful implementation. Understanding how the system interacts with an already accepted way of working on a mine is where these exercises become more about partnership.”

So how will CAS improve your customers’ operations?

“Our solution is purpose-built to address the occurrence of serious injuries and fatalities in the mining environment, specifically between machinery and personnel. We firmly believe in the zero-harm policy in our industry. The system has been developed with modularity, expandability, and interoperability in mind, building on layers of technology to ensure the highest level of safety.”

Collision Avoidance System (CAS)
• Multi-layered safety system that is reliable and upgradeable.
• Detects and warns equipped vehicle’s operators and pedestrians of each other’s presence.
• Three levels of reaction, from 7 to 9. It’s easy to upgrade to a higher level.
• Level 7: Operator awareness, a warning system.
• Level 8: Advisory controls, an advisory system.
• Level 9: Intervention controls, a collision avoidance system.

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