Temporary shutdown of GAG at Pike River mine

Temporary shutdown of GAG at Pike River mine

National News

The Gorniczy Agregat Gasniczy inertisation machine (GAG) is currently shut down at the Pike River mine to allow two high pressure hoses to be replaced.

The specialist hoses supply water to the machine and were found to be damaged yesterday.

New fittings were manufactured in Christchurch last night so the replacement hoses could be attached to the GAG.

This required the old fittings to be sent to Christchurch so engineers could make an exact copy for the Polish designed machine.

The new hoses and fittings were trucked back to the mine overnight from Christchurch because the load dimensions and weight meant they could not be airlifted.

The machine is expected to resume operation later today and the shutdown has provided the opportunity for extensive maintenance to be carried out.

"This is a complex, powerful device involving a jet engine and high pressure water. It has been running since Wednesday night" said Superintendent Gary Knowles.

"You can't pick up spares at the local hardware store and it's unrealistic to have a spare for every possible part on site."

"The shut down is not helpful but we are advised by our experts that it is unlikely to have a significant impact on efforts to extinguish the fire."

ENDS

Editors note we will advise media via the Police website once the GAG has restarted.

Police media liaison in Greymouth: 027 501 5742