Ownership: : Queensland Coal (82 per cent), Nippon Steel Australia (8 per cent), Marubeni Coal (6.67 per cent) and Sumisho Coal Development (3.33 per cent)
The Hail Creek Mine site is 120km southwest of Mackay in central Queensland.
It was first discovered in the 1970s but construction didn’t begin onsite until 2001. The mine finally opened for operation in 2003. Three years later, the site underwent an expansion that increased production from 6 million tonnes per annum to 8mtpa.
The open cut mine is managed by Rio Tinto and operated 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
It uses the dragline, truck and shovel method and produces a low ash, low sulphur, low volatile hard coking coal, which produces coke with high hot and cold strength conditions of low coke oven wall pressure. It is a key component in the coke blends by many major international steel mills and coke works.
Coal from the mine is railed to the Dalrymple Bay Coal Terminal near Mackay.
Overall, the mine provides Asia and Europe with up to 8mtpa of hard coking coal.
In 2013 the Hail Creek Mine produced 6.839 million tonnes of hard coking coal and 191,000t of thermal coal – a significant increase on the previous year’s production results.