Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Dust Concerns with M2 Project Widening

Response by M2 Project:

Thank you for advising us of this matter.
Dust suppression is taken very seriously by the project team as we are conscious of impacts it can cause on the adjoining community but also our workers who spend up to 10 hours standing next to it on site. Some dust from the activities being undertaken is expected however we are taking measures to mitigate the dust impacts at the source. 

These measures include use of water carts to supply water to hand held hoses, gurneys or milling head attached water spray units during rock excavation works. The project also ensures that the workers are educated to identify dust impacts and how to modify the operations where possible to minimise impacts. Site staff also monitor wind speed and direction and stop work when excessive wind conditions prevail.  It should be noted that while it may appear that only one water cart is in a location, it is often the case that more than one water hose is attached to it and multiple machines can be watered down. In addition to the standard use of hoses and gurneys to create a spray mist to reduce dust, the Project Team have recently installed spray heads on the milling machines that grind the rock back.

At the end of a work shift the excavated material is contained in stockpiles and watered down. In addition to that our afterhours dust control strategy has two water carts on standby to spray exposed areas and their use is initiated when forecasts indicate the possibility of strong wind. We have installed 2 dedicated weather stations at either end of the project that help us initiate this strategy.  
While we have a responsibility to ensure a balance between the dust control measures and water runoff excessive spraying might cause dust suppression and any potential health effects are taken very seriously. Our community complaints and information line 1800 196 266 is available at all times construction work is being undertaken and we would strongly encourage residents to contact us on directly if they have any concerns relating to the project particularly those that might be causing health issues at the time they are occurring so we can address them. 


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