Tell Minister John Yakabuski (Natural Resources and Forestry) to impose ‘Flyrock Exclusion Zone’ on proposed Hidden Quarry in Rockwood Ontario and on all Ontario aggregate quarries. (Click here for the CRC Newletter – Take Action)
March 18, 2019: CRC Media Release – Rockwood neighbours demand a ‘flyrock exclusion zone’ near proposed Hidden Quarry blasting
Published Monday, March 18, 2019 2:09PM EDT
A hidden quarry near Rockwood has been a contentious issue for several years.
Now, concerned residents are sounding the alarm over the proposal and say there’s an issue that hasn’t been addressed yet.
A visual display of a possible danger has been set up by a group just off of Hwy. 7. A several-hundred pound piece of limestone is smashed through
a car windshield. It’s called flyrock… more.
Flyrock refers to the unintended ejection of rocks from blast holes due to fissures, cavities, or other weaknesses in the underground rock structure adjacent to the blast holes or faulty blast design. Flyrock ejected from the top of the blast holes, as opposed to the face of the excavation much of which will be under water, is the potential problem in the Hidden Quarry. Many jurisdictions around the world require exclusion zones of 500 m for rock blasting operations, but here there are no standards meaning that the 19 houses, businesses, buildings and residents within the 500 metre radius are at risk, as well as cars, school and GO buses and other vehicular traffic along about a one and a half kilometre stretch of Provincial Highway 7, a busy commuter road in this area. “Wild flyrock” also can occur, with incidents of rock being thrown 1000 to 1200 m having been reported. See the FAQ section on Blasting to find out about the other hazards and dangers that the Hidden Quarry proponents are hiding.
Doug Tripp MASc, MEd, is a chemical engineer and an independent training and management consultant, specializing in energy and environmental management. He holds Masters Degrees in Chemical Engineering and Higher Education. Doug is President of the CRC Board.
Flyrock in open pit mines such as quarries is the unintended propulsion of rocks through the air as a result of blasting. The risk to the public (as opposed to the operators) arises when their trajectory ends beyond the confines of the operating site. As determined by the Supreme Court of Canada (Castonguay Blasting Ltd. v. Ontario (Environment)), under the Ontario EPA, any flyrock discharge that results in adverse effects on the natural environment is regarded as discharge of a contaminant, and is forbidden by Provincial Law. There are recorded incidents of flyrock being thrown up to 1300 m but normally (reportedly 90% of the time) flyrock falls within a radius of 500 m. Click here to learn more about flyrock and the specific dangers it presents to many homes in Rockwood and to everyone who uses Highway 7 eastbound from Rockwood.
Retired Mining Engineer Bill Hill, a Rockwood resident, talks about his experiences with flyrock and others dangers that a quarry/open pit mine pose to the area.(click here for the CRC YouTube Channel).