While reducing costs during the economic downturn has been a harsh reality for most of the mining sector, companies need to be careful not to slash plant maintenance budgets to the detriment of their operation’s long term health.
“Pursuing short term savings can be foolhardy if it undermines the ability of the plant to generate value for the business,” says Wilhelm van Wyk, FLSmidth’s manager operation and maintenance for Southern Africa.
Appointing an external OEM contractor can be the most cost effective option, where the mine’s commitment to quality maintenance is held in place by a contractual relationship with service agreement levels to manage these activities.
“This means that performance targets, which have been preset between the mine and the contractor, must be met on an ongoing basis,” says Wilhelm. “This creates a relationship which is actually far more beneficial to the mine; the contractor has to meet certain parameters on a monthly basis, so it is not that easy for individuals on a plant to cut corners in the maintaining of equipment.
“An important advantage of dealing with a specialist OEM is that the intervention feeds the correct maintenance strategies into the plant’s management system, to ensure that the data is recorded and tracked for future reference,” Wilhelm concludes. “It may also be necessary to upgrade or refurbish equipment so it can be returned to OEM standards as there is no point in maintaining equipment that is not fit for purpose.”
Tel: (010) 210-4820

Email: marinda.kerr@flsmidth.com