Former coal mine workers in KZN, who are suffering from silicosis, are planning a class action lawsuit against a company that allegedly forced them to work in unsafe working conditions, says a Sunday Tribune report. They were employed at the Durnacol Coal Mine for many years, during which time they contracted silicosis.

Human rights lawyer Richard Spoor has taken up the fight on behalf of the mineworkers.

Thamsanqa Malusi, who works with Spoor, confirmed they were screening both current and former mineworkers across the country. He said they planned to sue 10 coal mining companies and their subsidiaries.

The plan is to sue the mining companies for pneumoconiosis, or black lung disease, that mineworkers contracted,’ he said.

Malusi noted that they were also in a legal battle with the Sasol Group, which was at an advanced stage, and they planned to challenge the Anglo Group and Exxaro (formerly known as Kumba Resources) in the near future.

Full Sunday Tribune report (subscription needed)