Oceana Gold is estimating its pit road at its Macraes mine in
East Otago may reopen within a fortnight, following its
closure on April 19 after a slump caused by heavy rain.
As with last year's similar slump on the same road and
temporary pit closure, there were no injuries and processing
continued, using stockpiled ore.
From a price of $2.37 at the beginning of April, Oceana
shares have steadily gained value.
After a strong first-quarter report and record revenues
released on Tuesday, they spiked further to end April almost
24% up at $2.93.
In January 2013, a slump on the same access road into the pit
at Macraes temporarily suspended work for 16 days.
Investor relations manager Sam Pazuki, contacted yesterday,
said the latest event ''was not dissimilar'' to that in
January last year. Both had occurred during periods ''of
heavy rainfall'' and neither resulted in injuries.
''We expect the open pit to resume in a couple of weeks
pending the mine plan,'' Mr Pazuki said.
While the road slump closed access to the main pit, it also
blocked access to the portal of the Frasers underground
Underground staff were helicoptered out of the main pit area
following the slump last month, but underground production
resumed on April 24.
Rain, snow or accumulated water during winter have at various
times disrupted operations during the mine's 23 years of
Mr Pazuki was asked whether the ground had simply become
waterlogged then given way, or whether it was a geological
''We're working on a new mine plan for the open pit and
working on the geotechs [of the ground] as well,'' he said.
Oceana management was confident the mine would still meet
full-year operational guidance, in spite of the slump.