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Fines for Ravensthorpe nickel mine over sulphuric acid spill

Tuesday 3rd of January 2017 09:36:40 AM



After a near-fatal accident two years ago, the Canadian owners of the Ravensthorpe nickel mine in Western Australia’s south have been fined $40,000.

An early guilty plea has been entered by the Australian subsidiary of Toronto based First Quantum Minerals after being charged with failing to provide a safe working environment when an acid tank ruptured in December 2014.

Three workers were trapped in a nearby control room when a wave of almost two million litres of sulphuric acid slurry burst out of a ruptured tank, the workers managed to escape without injury.

Infrastructure which includes electrical equipment was destroyed by the spill which cut the power supply to the entire site.

The tank which ruptured was one of a number of tanks used in the nickel extraction process.

The mine was closed for 49 days after the accident, and the mine's atmospheric leach circuit did not start recommissioning until July 2015.



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