Iron ore being loaded
onto rail wagons at
the Sishen mine
 
Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 11 March, 2008 – Exxaro Resources Limited (Exxaro) – South African-based, JSE-listed mining group with a diverse and world-class commodity portfolio in coal, mineral sands, base metals, industrial minerals and iron ore – reports that a prolonged furnace shut-down at its Empangeni central processing complex is expected trigger significant losses in the company’s production of both slag and low manganese pig iron in 2008.

A company news release here explained that a water ingress incident late last month had resulted in substantial damage to Furnace 2 at the KZN Sands Empangeni central processing complex. No one was injured during the incident.

“The incident resulted in Furnace 2 being shut down, bringing forward a planned four- month maintenance shut-down scheduled for June,” said the release. “The incident and extent of the resultant damage are the subject of a detailed investigation at present, and preliminary estimates suggest that the repairs to the furnace will increase the total downtime by a further four months, including a one month ramp-up period, it added.

“Although Furnace 1 is fully operational, the lengthy outage at Furnace 2 is expected to result in significantly lower production of both slag and low manganese pig iron in 2008, compared to the 2007 financial year,” the statement concluded.