Repair work is underway at BHP Billiton’s Olympic Dam uranium and copper underground mine in South Australia.

On 6 October operating machinery at the Clark Shaft haulage system in the Olympic Dam mine was damaged during operations.

The haulage system’s winder has since been removed and will be sent to Whyalla for repair next week.

The secondary Whenan Shaft is being used to hoist 25% of production and trials will commence shortly for trucking ore to the surface through the existing decline, the company said.

The shutdown of the Clark Shaft has allowed BHP to move ahead with maintenance work including a major smelter reline that was initially scheduled for next year.

Work is expected to be complete by mid January next year.

Full production is expected to commence by the third quarter of fiscal year 2010.