SA Mines and Energy Journal : February 2009
CODE RED Prominent Hill mine site. The storm approached from the north-west during a visit by SACOME Chief Executive Jason Kuchel, Minister for Mineral Resources Development Paul Holloway and other senior government members, who had been invited by OZ Minerals to view progress of the mining operations and construction of the processing plant. The CE is also a keen amateur photographer and took hundreds of photos as the storm gradually drew closer, until security staff advised people to head indoors in line with the company’s lightning policy. The policy may seem over-cautious, but a worker at OZ Minerals’ Sepon mine in Laos died last year after being hit by a “freak” lightning strike from a tropical storm that was 15km away. When building infrastructure in the outback of Lightning strikes Prominent Hill A cracking tropical thunderstorm created this spectacular light and sound show over the South Australia, companies have to be prepared for numerous threats and have measures in place to ensure the safety of all employees and visitors. Heavy storms can be a huge boon in terms of the rain they bring to the parched countryside, but they can also have dangerous consequences. At blue alert, with the storm around 30-50km away, all outdoor activities at Prominent Hill were suspended. At yellow alert, the storm was still more than 15km off. At red alert, or code red, the last workers were moving indoors. The winds suddenly sprung up and plastered the few remaining people outside with what seemed like a wall of dirt and grit. Then the heavens opened up and the rain came down – hard enough to stop the operation of haul trucks for 24 hours.
December January 2009
April May 2009