PYBAR Mining Services has been awarded an underground mining contract to operate Red River’s Far West deposit, part of its Thalanga zinc operation in northern Queensland.
PYBAR, which is based in Orange, New South Wales but has several offices across Australia, is the largest underground hard rock mining contractor in the country.
Far West has a JORC reserve of 1.5Mt at 12 per cent zinc equivalent, with a minimum mine life of five years. The Far West contract has a seven-year duration and will encompass box cut, excavation, drill and blast and more, with Far West’s decline cut having recently been completed.
PYBAR is also undertaking additional mining operations at Red River’s West 45 underground mine, which commenced operations in June last year.
Red River acquired Thalanga in 2014, two years after the site was put on care and maintenance by the previous owners.
Production restarted in September 2017 and first zinc delivered ahead of schedule and under budget the following month.
Red River hopes to capitalise on a surging zinc price, and has already secured offtake agreements with majors such as Glencore (albeit for copper) and Trafigura.