JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – Aim-listed BlueRock Diamonds will resume operations at its Kareevlei mine, in the Northern Cape, on Monday after a weeks-long suspension ordered by the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR).
The DMR suspended operations at the mine after an inspection on July 6 unveiled required changes to processing plant procedures, guarding rails on the plant and trackless mobile machinery (TMM).
“After a frustrating few weeks I am delighted that we are now back into production. Our team has worked hard over the last five weeks to rectify all matters to the satisfaction of the DMR,” CEO Adam Waugh said on Friday.
At the time of the suspension, Waugh explained that the TMM requirements related to machinery owned by contractor Diacar. Diacar has since withdrawn from its earthmoving service agreement with BlueRock after reviewing the DMR requirement to bring its fleet up to the required standard.
“Our relationship with Diacar was already being assessed as part of the review process in order to ensure that we were operating on the best possible terms.
“The result of the DMR inspection and Diacar’s decision not to implement their requirements has expedited this process and we expect to be able to resolve this matter either through appointing another contractor or through leasing and operating the equipment ourselves during the final stages of effecting the final changes to our plant,” he explained.
Now, with all issues resolved, production is set to resume on Monday, with volumes of more than 20 000 t/m targeted.
The mine would initially dip into the 30 000 t to 50 000 t of kimberlite stockpiles that had accumulated over the last two years, after which it will process kimberlite directly from the mine starting with the next blast, which is scheduled for late September.