Production was successfully recommenced yesterday at MMG Century, the world’s second largest zinc mine, following installation and testing of a bypass and associated repair work on the pipeline that transports concentrate from the processing plant to its Karumba port facility.
Production of concentrate at Century has been suspended for the past 11 weeks following failure of the pipeline on Monday 5 October.
“MMG is very pleased to restart concentrate production at Century this week,” said MMG Century General Manager Mr Karl Spaleck.
“We are particularly proud of and thankful to the team at Century for their tireless efforts throughout this period to complete the complex engineering and testing work required to enable us to safely recommence production.”
MMG Century undertook a number of weeks of careful testing and monitoring following the installation of the bypass prior to restarting production this week. During the period, mining operations continued to stockpile ore from the Century pit on the ROM pad and scheduled maintenance and repair work on the plant and at the port facility was completed. These arrangements enabled us to utilise our total workforce without standing anyone down whilst the pipeline was out of operation.
“We look forward to once again supplying our customers around the world with Century’s high quality zinc concentrate,” said Mr Spaleck.
Clean up at Floraville Station, the pastoral property on which the pipeline breach and release of zinc slurry occurred, has also continued well. The majority of contaminated soil at the site has now been transported back to the mine’s tailings dam. Final rehabilitation work at the site, as part of the Department of Environment and Resource Management approved plan, will also be completed at the end of the wet season. Ongoing monitoring will be undertaken to ensure the integrity of the clean up.
Mr Spaleck said that the team were thankful to the Floraville Station pastoralists, other pastoralists along the pipeline route, and the local community for supporting them through this issue.
“We are acutely aware of the inconvenience this incident caused and I would like to extend our thanks again to everyone that supported us throughout,” he said.
“Our team continued to work safely and carefully throughout difficult, and increasingly hot, conditions and I thank them again for their efforts.”
MMG Century will recommence its shipping program to customers in the coming weeks.
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