WHEN A TAILINGS DAM FAILS (PART 2)

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On January 25, 2019, the Córrego do Feijão Dam 1 collapsed at the Vale iron ore mine near Brumadinho in Brazil, releasing 11 million metric tons of tailings into the areas below the facility, including mine infrastructure buildings. The collapse was essentially immediate and nearly complete. There appeared to be no outward signs to provide an early warning. Please recognize that it is still very early in the investigation of this tragedy. Many opinions are just that: opinions. There is also some false information being circulated. An incorrect video clip of a facility failure (looks like a shotcreted wall, that is, a wall that has been treated with sprayed-on concrete) has been making the rounds. There appears to have been no earthquakes in the vicinity of the mine that would have caused this failure, except that information is based on USGS data, and if you recall, the US government was on partial shutdown when this even occurred. So there is no way to tell if the posted information was complete. Scores of people are dead, and many more are still missing. There is, in fact, already a Wikipedia page for this disaster (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brumadinho_dam_disaster Brumadinho dam disaster – Wikipedia The Brumadinho dam disaster occurred on 25 January 2019 when Dam I, a tailings dam at the Córrego do Feijão iron ore mine, 9 kilometres (5.6 mi) west of Brumadinho, Minas Gerais, Brazil, suffered a catastrophic failure. The dam is owned by Vale, the same company which was involved in the 2015 Mariana dam disaster. The dam released a mudflow that advanced over houses in a rural area near the … en.wikipedia.org ). That page states: “The collapse occurred just after noon. The mud hit the mine’s administrative area, where hundreds of the mine’s employees were having lunch, as well as the ‘Vila Ferteco’, a small community about 1 kilometre from the mine. At 3:50 p.m., the mud reached the Paraopeba River, the region’s main river, which supplies water to one third of the Greater Belo Horizonte region. As of 9 February 2019, at least 157 people were confirmed dead, 182 were considered missing and 182 people were rescued alive. At a press conference, Vale’s president, Fabio Schvartsman, stated that most of the victims are Vale’s employees. At a railroad branch, in the Córrego do Feijão region, three locomotives and 132 wagons were buried. Four railwaymen are missing. The mud also struck and destroyed two sections of railway bridge and about 100 metres of railway track”.

Tomorrow is St. Valentine’s Day.

My heart goes out to all of the people who have been effected by this sad tragedy.

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