The geotechnical documents and studies located here are intended to help establish stable and economically feasible mining practices that take into account the safety of personnel, equipment, infrastructure and the environment.
Reporting Geotechnical Incidents
The following form applies to any geotechnical incident classified as a dangerous occurrence or to any geotechnical incident that requires changes to an existing standard operating procedure or the creation of a site-specific safe work plan. In addition, any multi-bench pit slope failure, spoil failure resulting in full loss of the crest berm, or dam embankment instability (regardless of size) is to be documented on this form. This form is not intended for single bench failures fully captured by catchment berms or for "silver" failures on spoils not resulting in a dangerous occurrence. The "Advice of Geotechnical Incident" form should be submitted to the regional inspector of mines and the Manager, Geotechnical Engineering as soon as practical after the incident.
Dams and Water Management Infrastructure
Most mining dams in British Columbia are regulated under Part 10 of the Health, Safety and Reclamation Code for Mines in British Columbia, as established under the Mines Act. Some dams that impound non-contract water require a water licence and are regulated under the Water Act and BC Dam Safety Regulation. The Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources (EMPR), the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development (FLNR), and the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy (ENV) have established a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to clarify the regulatory responsibilities of these agencies for specific types of mining dams:
Additional references relating to mining dams as follows:
- Professional Practice Guidelines - Legislated Dam Safety Review in BC (PDF, 863KB)
- Ministry of Environment: Guidance for Assessing the Design, Size and Operation of Sedimentation Ponds Used in Mining (PDF, 319KB)
- FAQ on Tailings Dams, January, 2015 (PDF, 135KB)
Dam Safety Inspections
Under Part 10.5.3 of the Health, Safety and Reclamation Code for Mines in British Columbia, permitted mines are required to submit annual Dam Safety Inspections (DSIs).
Mined Rock and Overburden Piles
The geotechnical documents located here were developed by the British Columbia Mine Waste Rock Pile Research Committee, and form part of the "Interim Guidelines" referenced in Parts 10.1.6 and 10.6.7 of the Health, Safety and Reclamation Code for Mines in British Columbia.
- Consequence Assessment for Mine Waste Dump Failures, Interim Report, 1994 (PDF, 82.2MB)
- Documentation and Evaluation of Mine Dump Failures for Mines in British Columbia, 1992 (PDF, 92.2MB)
- Investigation and Design Manual, Interim Guidelines, 1991 (PDF, 8.4MB)
- Methods of Monitoring Waste Dumps Located in Mountainous Terrain, 1992 (PDF, 38.5MB)
- Operation and Monitoring of Mine Dumps, Interim Guidelines, 1991 (PDF, 25.9MB)
- Rock Drain Research Program, Final Report, 1997 (PDF, 21.9MB)