Moree Quarries

By on August 16, 2016

BOB FERGUSON, Quarry Manager for Moree Quarries provides an insight into the history of the site. 

Moree Quarries was established in 1946 by the then Associated Quarries [SA], they operated for a short time before selling to Mr Jack Kennedy. Mr Kennedy worked the quarry for many years up till his retirement when he sold it to Gambier Earthmovers in 1982.

The quarry is a fresh basalt and is unique in that its structure is made up of small blocks of approximately 60 cm x 60 cm stacked neatly on top of each other, this being called columnar basalt, thus making the blasting of the rock much easier than most. In the sixteen years I have been at this quarry we have only used a rock breaker for 20 hours to reduce oversize rock.

In the Kennedy days the extraction of the rock from the face was such that it was drilled with the old air track at about seventy degrees and at six foot intervals by ten foot deep, this was then primed with AN 65 geli and ANFO and fired simultaneously with number 8 detonators. Sometimes the rock would come down immediately sometimes the rock would come down during the night, thus adding to the thrill, the face was about sixty foot high.  Today with the technology provided and the much safer work practices implemented the job is far safer. Unfortunately in the bad old days the poor buggers had larger rocks and smaller crushers.

SITE PHOTO: Moree Quarry Crushing Plant

SITE PHOTO: Moree Quarry Crushing Plant

After Gambier Earthmovers took over the quarry they upgraded the plant by basically rebuilding the whole plant. They fitted a 42×30 single toggle Jaques jaw three foot Symons standard and a Canica 90 plus as well as a couple of larger screens. While this plant is still small compared to most quarries the company is looking at another upgrade to keep up with today’s sales.

Moree quarries main product sales are of class A aggregates, we have the capacity to do Class 1 and 2 crushed rocks through our blending bins and a 250 tonne per hour pugmill, we can also do cement treated crushed rock.

Moree quarry supplies fourteen concrete plants in both Victoria and South Australia as far north as Keith in SA and south to Hamilton in Victoria. We also supply Gambier Earthmovers for their Asphalt plant and all of their sealing projects in Mount Gambier and all around the South East and into Victoria.

SITE PHOTO: Moree Quarry

SITE PHOTO: Moree Quarry

In the past Moree quarry have done some large projects on the Western Highway and also supplied the aggregates to Topcoat when they resurfaced the highway through Nhill and Kaniva, also suppling Class 1 and 2 crushed rock and cement treated crushed rock to the VicRoads trailer exchange at Nhill.

A very large task was achieved when Iluka built their Douglas mineral sands mine, which is only 34 kilometres from the quarry in that one year our sales tripled, but we are lucky in that we can get mobile crushing and screening equipment from Gambier Earthmovers. A large portion of our aggregates go to road surfacing every season keeping the quarry very busy.

Moree Quarries has been a member of the CMPA since around 2003 and is thankful for the help and support we have received in training and information received and by reading the  Sand & Stone magazine.

60 Seconds with a voting member . . . 

What is your name? Bob Ferguson.

Bob Ferguson

Bob Ferguson

Who do you work for? Moree Quarries.

How many years have you been involved in the industry? 40 Years.

What are your hopes for the industry?   To keep going ahead in as safe and efficient manner as possible.

What is your role at the company? To manage all aspects of the day to day running of the quarry.

What is the best part of your job? t the end of the day to see your customers are happy with your product and service.



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