Victorian town of Mansfield and two gold mines shaken by an earthquake and aftershocks


Workers who were underground at gold mine sites near the epicenter of the 5.9 magnitude earthquake in Victoria have been safely brought to the surface, two companies say, a director of the one of the mines later describing when his building “began to shake violently”.

The Victoria State Emergency Service (SES) said some buildings in the town of Mansfield had been damaged, but there were no reports of injuries or damage at two nearby mines.

Mining company Kaiser Reef – which operates the A1 gold mine, about 25 miles from Mansfield – said around 12 miners were underground at the time of the quake, but had been safely evacuated.

The company said operations were suspended as detailed checks were being carried out, but there was no visible damage at the site.

White Rock Minerals, which operates the Woods Point gold mine about 60 kilometers from the quake’s epicenter, said there had been “no immediate signs of damage” despite “severe tremors.”

Nine workers who were underground at the time have been found and are now all safely back to the surface, the company said.

Mr Gill, who was there, said the building he was in “began to shake violently”.

“It lasted 30 seconds which is not a normal mining induced event. I got out and we started to make sure people were safe and healthy,” he said. declared.

“It was a little scary for sure and making sure everyone was safe was the number one priority.”

Despite the strength of the quake and six aftershocks reported, the SES said no injuries were reported.

Mansfield Zoo took to social media saying the resident animals were “all fine, just a little shaken”.

“The epicenter was 25 miles from us, and we had a lot of rattling and moving trees. Fortunately, there was no damage other than a few items that fell off the shelves,” the zoo said. on Facebook.

“The animals are all fine – they were surprised but the shaking only lasted about 20 seconds and everything calmed down again.”

The Victorian town of Mansfield after the earthquake struck near the town.(

Provided: Chris McConnell

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The SES said there had also been reports of landslides in the alpine region of northeast Victoria.

Mansfield Shire Mayor Mark Holcombe was sitting in his home on his farm near town when the 5.9 magnitude earthquake struck around 9.15am.

“I walked out of the house to see if there was any damage which didn’t appear to be, but I could hear him rumbling in the valley,” Mr Holcombe told News Breakfast.

“It was quiet for a while after.

“All the birds, interestingly enough, went crazy, so that was a real sign that something was wrong at all.”

Bald old man wearing a suit and tie
Mansfield Shire Mayor Mark Holcombe.(

Provided: Mansfield Shire Council

)

Mansfield is a town of about 3,400 residents and is located approximately 180 kilometers northeast of Melbourne in the Victorian Alps.

A spokesperson for SES said there had been reports of damage to several buildings in the Mansfield area, including the local ambulance center.

“People were running in the streets, in shops, etc., but no damage to our knowledge,” Mr Holcombe said.

“There are some issues with the telecommunications though – so some of the phone lines I had a hard time getting through so we just have to figure out what they are.”

Mr Holcombe has lived in the area for 20 years and said residents had never heard of a similar earthquake in their lifetime.

“The locals I spoke to – I only spoke to a few – they don’t have any experience of it, and they’ve been here longer than I have,” he said.

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The earthquake looked like a truck

Chris McConnell, who works at a men’s clothing store in Mansfield, said he “felt a rumble” and thought it was a big truck coming.

“Then it got worse,” he said.

“I thought ‘did something explode?’ But there was too much of a long rumble.

“You could feel it through your feet, and it was slightly unstable, but other than that I didn’t feel in danger.”

A sign welcoming people to Mansfield on an overcast day.
Mansfield is located in the Victorian Alps about 180 kilometers northeast of Melbourne.(

ABC News: Danielle Bonica

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He said he had heard of minor damage at a nearby fruit and vegetable store where items fell to the ground.

“There was no crackle, no whine in the building, but I could definitely feel it through the floor,” said Mr McConnell.

“It was like a big semi-trailer going by.

“I think the phone lines are a problem. No calls have been received, but we haven’t had a power outage.”

Landscape photo of Mount Buller in front of Mansfield Zoo
Mount Buller, seen from Mansfield.(

File: Rikky Lund

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Ralph Barraclough, who lives in Licola, in the Victorian Alps, said the whole area was shaken.

“It shook us up enough here. I was afraid my house would break down, but it’s pretty solid,” he said.

“We’re getting some pretty notable aftershocks here as well.

“It sounds like about a quarter and a tenth of the original. And I can also hear rumblings in the background, but I’ve heard them from the earthquake.

“I haven’t had a chance to check in with people yet, but the phone is still working.”

A man wearing a sweater standing under a clothesline
Ralph Barraclough felt the earthquake in Licola, in the Victorian Alps.(

ABC Gippsland: Emma Field

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Asha Martin, who runs a retreat in Jamieson, near Mansfield, said her neighbors came after feeling the quake.

“They too looked like they had had a heart attack,” she said.

“The sound of the earth under the mountain rumbling and seeing the house rocking and the trees outside shaking was quite remarkable.

“My son was panicking because he thought it was an avalanche from Mount Terrible.”


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