Bridge opens as Mesa A expand
Rio Tinto has officially opened the new Paterson Bridge on the Northwest Coastal Highway as part of the Mesa A mining operation expansion.
The bridge is named after the late Mr Algy Paterson, a respected elder of the Kuruma and Marthudunera (K&M) people and on Tuesday, the naming plaque was officially unveiled by Andrew Kite, Rio Tinto chief development officer Pilbara Development, who represented the Robe River Iron Associates joint venture partners.
Michael Gollschewski, Rio Tinto chief operating officer for Expansion Projects said the 900 metre long elevated diversion of the Northwest Coastal Highway, including Paterson Bridge, would ensure safe passage for regular road users as well as the fully laden haul trucks operating between the Warramboo Pit located on the west side of the highway and the existing Mesa A mining operations, located 4km to the east.
“Paterson Bridge also includes a public viewing area, providing a great opportunity for the road users to see the huge haul trucks operating at first hand,” Mr Gollschewski said.
“We are really pleased with the outcome of this project and worked closely with a number of stakeholders including the traditional land owners K&M and Main Roads WA to achieve it.”
The Warramboo project, which included the ten metre high bridge structure, took around eleven months to construct.
More than 40 people attended the opening ceremony and also toured the adjacent Mesa A mining operation.
Mesa A currently mines 25 million tonnes per annum and commenced operations in 2010.
The Mesa A mining operation is part of the Robe River Iron Associates joint venture which consists of Rio Tinto (53 per cent), Mitsui (33 per cent), Nippon Steel (10.5 per cent) and Sumitomo Metal Industries (3.5 per cent).
Robe River is the world’s fourth largest seaborne supplier of iron ore.
Robe River operates three open pit mining operations in Western Australia: Mesa J and Mesa A in the Robe Valley, near Pannawonica, and West Angelas, approximately 100km west of Newman.