Brazilian mining giant Vale (NYSE:VALE) announced this weekend that the Sul Superior Dam at the Gongo Soco mine is in a critical condition when it comes to stability. This, following the work of an independent auditor, hired to evaluate the state of the structure.
The dam is located in the municipality of Barão de Cocais, in the southeastern Brazilian state of Minas Gerais. This is the same region where, back in January 2019, a dam at Vale’s Córrego do Feijão iron ore mine collapsed killing hundreds and causing massive environmental destruction.
With the idea of avoiding a similar tragedy, the company launched a protocol to initiate level 3 of the Mining Dams Emergency Action Plan for Sul Superior, which is inactive and is scheduled to be decommissioned together with other nine dams.
The level 3 alert is just to help authorities to identify residents of the area and guide them to Secondary Safety Zones. Vale said all residents of the Self-Rescue Zone were removed from the site on February 8.
“In a crisis management situation, it is important that people stay calm, alert, and attentive to all the instructions provided. Please, trust and rest assured that the public authorities have a huge and very qualified team working behind the scenes and thinking of every detail to ensure the safety and well-being of everyone at the Secondary Safety Zone,” the coordinator of Vale’s Immediate Response Committee, Marcelo Klein, told community members during a site visit.
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