Emergency Evacuation: CITIC Pacific Mining


CITIC Pacific Mining is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hong Kong listed company CITIC Pacific Limited. The company, headquartered in Perth, is constructing the Sino Iron Project 100km west of Karratha in Western Australia’s Pilbara region.


To arrange a safety compliant mass evacuation of 550+ regionally located mining personnel

At the announcement of an escalating Yellow Alert cyclone warning off the coast of Western Australia, RTM were administered to:

  • Safely evacuate 550+ mining personnel within a limited timeframe
  • Negotiate sufficient evacuation transportation, including scheduled and charter flights, and emergency accommodation for displaced personnel

Road Blocks

As with any natural disaster, cyclone activity occurs with minimal warning and can escalate or change course at a moment’s notice. The remote location of many Australian mining sites also presents limitations to land and air transport services, further contributing to the challenges of an emergency evacuation.
In managing the relocation of 550+ CITIC Pacific Mining personnel, RTM was faced the following challenges:

  • The constantly evolving nature of the situation (uncontrollable weather patterns)
  • Airline capacity limitations on regional routes
  • Limited availability of regional transportation services from site to airport (100km away)
  • The event took place over a public holiday weekend. This required RTM to engage emergency resources to facilitate the required travel arrangements


The core elements of RTM’s solution included:

  • Continuous weather system tracking via the Bureau of Meteorology to ensure that all required action was pre-empted
  • Activation of RTM’s Local Emergency Committee and assembly of a dedicated consulting team, consisting of two managers and two consultants, to work throughout the public holiday
  • Utlisation of RTM’s superior supplier relationships in diverting a scheduled Qantas flight from Paraburdoo to Karratha, enabling the evacuation of 87 additional personnel when all other airline capacity had been exhausted
  • Post-event meeting and de-brief between RTM and CITIC Pacific Mining


Successful evacuation of 550+ remote location personnel

Through RTM’s successful negotiations with transportation providers, including the rerouting of a scheduled Qantas flight via Paraburdoo, RTM achieved the successful evacuation of all required personnel plus emergency accommodation within 24 hours.


“Our Company recently had the huge task of reducing the number of personnel at our mine site twice in 4 weeks, due to Cyclones Bianca and Carlos.

On both occasions we contacted RTM for assistance with minimal notice, requiring a large number of personnel to be evacuated to Perth and Eastern States ports. RTM provided a dedicated consulting team to manage the process, ensuring we met our tight deadlines. On more than one occasion we have required their assistance on weekends and a public holiday and they have had no hesitation in providing additional staff to assist with our requirements – a great relief to our team.

On an average day, RTM always goes above and beyond to meet our travel needs and they have proven that they will go one step further when we need emergency assistance. Our team can always rely on them, and they always provide fantastic service.”

Deirdre Wilcox, Travel Supervisor - CITIC Pacific