Risk Assessment: Operation of a hypersaline borefield, Mt Keith operations, WA

Risk Assessment: Operation of a hypersaline borefield, Mt Keith operations, WA

Risk Assessment, Operation of Hypersaline Borefield, Mt Keith Operations, Goldfields, Western Australia


A semi-quantitative risk assessment was undertaken of the abstraction and
conveyance of hyper-saline (Total Dissolved Solids > 35,000mg/L) groundwater via an above-ground pipeline from a borefield,
approximately 30km west of the minesite for process supply at the Mt Keith Nickel Mine in Western Australia. Historically, a number
of spillages have occurred resulting in the release of hyper-saline water to the surface

A review was undertaken of existing data regarding groundwater quality, flow rates and
incidences of spillages from the 32km long above-ground pipeline.

The risk assessment examined the following elements:

– Identification and ranking of potential receptors
– Identification of likely modes and frequency of failure of the pipeline
– Assessment of apparent risk from failure
– Investigation of options for risk management
– Cost analysis of options
– Detailed appraisal of selected management strategies.

Stuart Jeffries
Hydrosolutions Pty Ltd

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