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ABS Consulting Verifies Design and Construction of Capsules Used to Hoist Miners to Safety

November 1, 2010

ABS Consulting engineer Martin Raddatz, Business Development Manager for Chile, is shown in one of the capsules during the final stage of inspection.
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Houston, Texas—The rescue of 33 men from the San Jose Mine in Chile on October 12-13 was a proud moment for the office of ABS Consulting in Chile, which verified the safety of the capsules.

Engineer Lionel Doren performed the risk assessment of the capsule used to bring the miners to the surface. ASMAR Naval Shipyard designed and built the rescue cage, dubbed FENIX after the bird signifying new life. Although a single capsule was used in the rescue, three cages had been manufactured as a backup in case of a problem. ABS Consulting utilized the "what-if" technique on all capsules during the risk assessment process.

Each capsule stood nearly 10 feet tall but had interior space of barely over 6 feet in height and about 21 inches in diameter. The pods, which weigh more than 900 pounds each, arrived at the mine on September 25, almost two months after the mine had collapsed.

The workers were trapped about 2,300 feet below ground when the San Jose Mine collapsed August 5. The copper and gold mine is located near Copiapo in Chile's northern Atacama desert. The mine is owned by Compañia Minera San Esteban Primera, a private Chilean company.

ABS Consulting Chile is active in the Latin America mining market and has a strong relationship with the Chilean government. Following the mine collapse, representatives of the safety, risk and integrity management company met with government officials to contribute our expertise to the international rescue effort.

"Congratulations to the families of the 33 men rescued from the San Jose Mine," said Sergio Ostornol, Regional Manager for ABS Consulting, Chile. "ABS Consulting is proud to have played a role in the rescue of these brave men. Looking forward, we hope to utilize our expertise to contribute to enhanced safety regulations in the Chilean mining industry as well as other Latin American countries and build a region that epitomizes one of the safest operations in the world."


About ABS Consulting

ABS Consulting is a global safety, risk and integrity management company with broad experience completing challenging projects worldwide in the oil and gas, chemical process, nuclear, government, maritime, mining and renewable energy industries. ABS Consulting has offices in 28 countries and over 1,400 employees worldwide. ABS Consulting headquarters are located in Houston.

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