Narrabri helps drive Delta SBD to new heights

A DEVELOPMENT contract with Whitehaven’s Narrabri project in New South Wales and a longwall build contract on behalf of Caterpillar Global Products at Narrabri helped underground mine contractor Delta SBD increase its interim net profit by 94.5% to $3.3 million and its revenues by 40.3% year-on-year to $55.6 million.
Narrabri helps drive Delta SBD to new heights Narrabri helps drive Delta SBD to new heights Narrabri helps drive Delta SBD to new heights Narrabri helps drive Delta SBD to new heights Narrabri helps drive Delta SBD to new heights

Delta SBD's longwall surface build at Whitehaven Coal's Narrabri mine.

Lou Caruana

The NSW-based contractor, which listed on the ASX in December 2010, focused on its existing client base and successful implementation of new contracts in the six months to December 2011.

To undertake the Whitehaven development contract Delta SBD recruited 60 employees on a fly-in, fly-out basis to man two development panels using the client’s equipment.

In other ongoing work, the company successfully completed six longwall moves projects, including Ulan, Ravensworth, Wambo, Grasstree, Integra and Narrabri.

Production at Boral’s Berrima mine site was 139,000 tonnes for the period, up 40% from the comparative period. Delta SBD continued to sustain its operations at BHP Illawarra Coal’s Appin mine and at Peabody Energy Australia’s Metropolitan mine both in New South Wales.

Its workforce continued to increase from 418 in June 2011 to 489 in December 2011. A further rise in employee numbers was expected as industry growth continued, the company said.

Demand for equipment hire from its expanding fit-for-purpose longwall relocation and development equipment fleet increased, with hire utilisation up from 50% to 62%.

New longwall relocation equipment delivered during the half year included a 60t heavy lift machine and two 15t loaders. A 130t shearer carrier delivery is also imminent.

The company purchased additional coal drivage development equipment, positioning it for further contract work. The development equipment included a continuous miner, a feeder breaker, four ram cars, a shuttle car, two substations, two auxiliary ventilation fans, a pipe trailer, a Brumby tool carrier and two distribution control boxes.

Other capital acquisitions included four personnel drift runners (personnel and equipment transporters), a jumbo dyke extraction drill and blast rig and two 7t loaders.

The previously ordered new Joy 12CM 30 continuous miner remains on schedule for delivery in July 2012.

“These acquisitions demonstrate the company’s focus on continually expanding our fit-for-purpose equipment to ensure we are in a strong position to respond to demand from clients as new mines are developed and existing clients look to increase production,” the company said.