Western Areas restarts operations after Forrestania bush fire

Western Areas has resumed operations after a lightning strike initiated a bush fire in the area of the Forrestania nickel operation in Western Australia.

The company activated the fire safety protocols for all personnel after the immediate fire risk was imposed, and all personnel were safe and accounted for.

This fire event led to the temporary suspension of operations on the site.

Westerns Areas has restarted its operations using back-up power generation, while restoring the Cosmic Boy mill operations.

Although the Cosmic Boy mill operations were suspended until the power transmission was restored, Western Areas does not expect any impact to nickel production or cost guidance for the 2020 financial year.

Mains power was interrupted on December 7 as a result of three damaged Western Power poles north of Forrestania nickel operations, but was shortly restored by Sunday evening.

“(Western Areas) would again like to extend its thanks to the FNO emergency response team and the various firefighting teams that have assisted in keeping our people and the Forrestania operation safe.”

Communications in and out of Forrestania have been reestablished.

Staff were unaffected and no mining assets were damaged.

The bush fire also led to the suspension of Hannans’ Forrestania exploration project, which is located approximately 120 kilometres south of South Cross in Western Australia.