Volunteering To Serve the Community: Minister President Dr. Haseloff Presents Mine Rescue Service Badges of Honor

On October 11th, 2017, 10 miners from the esco salt mine in Bernburg and the Zielitz potash plant were awarded gold and silver mine rescue service badges of honor, endowed by the Federal President, for 20 and 15 years of mine rescue service. The awards were presented by Minister President Dr. Reiner Haseloff (Saxonia-Anhalt) at a ceremony held in the state chancellery at Magdeburg.

In total, 10 colleagues of the mine rescue teams from Zielitz and Bernburg were honored. 7 colleagues from the potash plant Zielitz attended the celebration and were awarded the gold and silver mine rescue service badges of honor personally by Dr. Reiner Haseloff, Minister President of Saxony-Anhalt.

A total of 350 employees serve in mine rescue teams at the K+S Group's German mines, which also include the Zielitz and Bernburg plants. They serve on a voluntary basis – the overwhelming majority having done so for many years – to eliminate dangers underground, protect people's lives or to preserve assets.

The particular importance of their voluntary service was emphasized by Minister President Dr. Reiner Haseloff, who said "This award honors your great commitment to serving the common good. You have dedicated yourselves to helping your fellow human-beings. You see such commitment as service. You do serve others. Voluntary service is the opposite of maintaining a distance. In mining, only community and solidarity can make the difference. What lies behind that slogan is a core element of the ethical standards upheld by those who work in mining. As members of mine rescue teams, you embody that ethos and those qualities and, at the same time, you represent the many miners in our state."

Well trained and supplied with modern equipment

Mine rescue service requires a high degree of physical fitness, which has to be maintained not just through engaging in sports but also through regular practical exercises. It is particularly important to be able to operate at peak physical performance while using respiratory protection.

The K+S Group's mine rescue teams possess modern equipment that is tailored to deployment conditions. Alongside the necessary vehicles, some of which have mobile extinguishing technology and special equipment for fighting fires underground, it includes clearing equipment, ventilators as well as gas measuring technology and infrared cameras. The servicing and maintenance of the equipment is handled by specially trained service personnel.

In total, the mine rescue team at the esco plant Bernburg has 28 members while the potash plant Zielitz has 62 members. Both mine rescue teams are interlinked through mutual agreements on the provision of assistance and linked to other plants, too, with the result that their area of responsibility also extends to mining plants outside Saxony-Anhalt and as far away as Brandenburg and Lower Saxony.

About K+S KALI GmbH

K+S KALI GmbH headquartered in Kassel extracts crude salts containing potassium, magnesium and sulphur from its six mines in Germany. These are used to produce a wide range of fertilizer specialties and preliminary products for many different technical, industrial and pharmaceutical applications. K+S KALI GmbH is one of the world's leading suppliers of potash and magnesium products. The company belonging to the K+S Group employs about 8,000 people. More information on K+S KALI GmbH can be found on the company website.

About esco

esco - european salt company is Europe's largest supplier of salt and part of the global production network operated by the K+S Group’s Salt business unit, which has sites in Europe as well as in North and South America.

With an annual production capacity of about 9.7 million tonnes of crystallized salt and brine, esco offers its customers a full range of high-grade salt products - from salt for chemical use through industrial and pharmaceutical salts to food grade salt and de-icing agents for winter road clearance services. The company, which is headquartered in Hanover, has about 20 production and distribution sites in Germany, Poland, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Italy, Spain and Portugal.