Residue Storage Areas and Dams
Residue Storage Areas and Dams

Residue Storage Areas and Dams

Long Harbour, Newfoundland & Labrador

CLIENT:Vale Newfoundland and Labrador
CONSULTANT:Fluor Canada Ltd.
CONTRACT TYPE:Unit Price
Project VALUE:$50,000,000
Project SIZE:150,000 cubic m. of excavation
350,000 cubic m. of processed dam zone fills
DURATION:8 months
Residue Storage Areas and Dams

H.J. O’Connell Construction Limited (HJOC), a subsidiary of Bird, completed the residue storage area and dams project at Vale’s Long Harbour Nickel Processing Plant substantially ahead of schedule. A 50% increase to scope due to geotechnical condition changes including lower than expected rock elevations also required additional excavation and backfill in the same time frame. The project consisted of three earth filled dams encapsulating the residue storage area. Once the plant is operational, the area will be used for the storage of tailings in the processing of nickel.

During the project, the team encountered the challenge of lowering an existing lake eight metres to facilitate excavations. HJOC tripled the dewatering rate by pumping water into an adjacent small pond and using a natural stream bed, in combination with a diversion channel, to allow the water flow to be increased without causing negative environmental impact. By increasing the drawdown rate, we were able to accelerate the project schedule.

During construction, winter weather conditions posed a threat to the schedule; however, through value engineering, HJOC altered the original design scope and positioned the first dam one metre downstream to allow the grout trench and dams to be built independent of one another, rather than dependently as originally proposed. Subsequently, the team was able to deliver the project ahead of schedule and without any lost time incidents.

Residue Storage Areas and Dams
Residue Storage Areas and Dams : Projects : Bird Construction