Tuesday 21st February 2012
|Text too small?|
Solid Energy, the state-owned coal miner, has stopped work at its Spring Creek underground mine after being issued with a prohibition notice by the Department of Labour.
The mines inspectorate issued the notice yesterday after three separate incidents at the mine. Solid Energy chief operating officer Barry Bragg said the incidents occurred due to systems breakdowns, but multiple safety controls “proved effective”. Solid Energy shut the mine for five months in the wake of the 2010 Pike River disaster to carry out safety checks.
“We recognise that expectations for underground mining have been raised substantially,” Bragg said in a statement. “We will work very closely with the department to ensure we meet our and their expectations prior to resuming mining at Spring Creek.”
The notice comes just three days after the department closed the Broken Hills gold mine in the Coromandel after that operation failed to bring itself up to standard following a January inspection. The Coromandel mine was given an improvement notice outlining where it didn’t comply, but those issues weren’t remedied.
Mine safety has been under close scrutiny since the November 2010 explosions that killed 29 men at the Pike River underground coal mine and prompted a Royal Commission on inquiry into the disaster.
Solid Energy said the stoppage of underground work isn’t expected to impact on the mine’s customers, with the operation in a development phase, producing limited output.
Earlier this month, Solid Energy bought back the 49 percent stake in Spring Creek it sold to American multinational company Cargill in 2007 for an undisclosed price.
The closure came on the eve of Solid Energy’s first-half earnings, which are due out today.
No comments yet
MARKET CLOSE: NZ shares rise as speculation on interest rate cuts fuels global equities buying
Fonterra the first of six companies taking Z Energy's new biodiesel
NZ dollar TWI heads for 1.4% weekly gain as local allure attracts investors
NZ bonds rally in June quarter as interest rates seen lower for longer
Bayleys fined $2.2M, Success Realty fined $900,000 in first of 13 price-fixing cases
Stride Property's Investore subsidiary to join NZX 50 after bookbuild
Manukau Harbour delivers best cost benefits for a new $4B Auckland port, study group says
Acurity to launch Wellington's first private cancer care unit in $20 mln joint venture
Stone Shi-linked investment company buys Ardmore Airport for undisclosed sum
NZ wool prices fall at auction on stronger kiwi dollar, mixed quality