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DiamondCorp temporarily suspends underground mining at Lace after fall of ground event

The underground mining operations at 's diamond mine in SouthAfrica's Free State are temporarily suspended following an investigation by theSouth African Department of Minerals Resources into a fall of ground incidentin a development tunnel on the 310-meter level.

As a result, the company will not be able to achieve itsmonthly target of mining 30,000 tonnes of ore in July, but it expects to makeup for the shortfall by September, it said July 18.

The incident occurred when explosive misfires were beingmade safe and resulted in a miner's assistant suffering contusions and fourcracked ribs.

Following the accident, all miner's assistants are goingthrough refresher training for handling explosives, expected to be completedJuly 20.

Meanwhile, the plant at Lace will process tailings.

Once the assistants are recertified, DiamondCorp will applyto the department for resumption of underground mining operations by the end ofthis week.

Previously, the company said it was to reach full productioncapacity of 30,000 tonnes per month at the Lace mine by July.