Newman

 

 

NEWMAN

 

GPS 23 21 21 S 119 44 17 E

 

 

 

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Auski

Nullagine

Nearby Towns

Kumarina

 

 

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STATISTICS

Distance from Perth

1184 Km

Population

9087

Average Rainfall

330.1mm

Mean Max Temp

32C

Mean Min Temp

16.3C

 

SERVICES

Police

08 9175 4000

Fire and Rescue

08 9175 2526

Medical

08 9175 8333

Visitor Centre

08 9175 2888

 

CARAVAN PARKS

Whaleback Village

0407 703 340

 

HOTEL / MOTEL / B AND B

Newman Hotel

08 9175 1101

Seasons Hotel

08 9177 8666

Mia Mia

08 9175 8400

Capricorn Village

08 9175 1535

Chalets

08 9175 2888

 

CALENDAR OF EVENTS

 

 

 

DESCRIPTION

 

It is a very modern town surrounded by some spectacular countryside. Because of it's modern appearance it is not like a country town at all, more like a suburb of Perth that has been transported into a very remote area.

Near the tourist information centre in Newman is a large shovel known as AK shovel No. 1. In its working life it moved 66,712,000 tons of ore. The Haulpak truck next to it moved 35 million tons during its service life.

There is finally a sealed road from Newman to Tom Price and on to the coastal highway.

Although the town is relatively new, there have been settlers in the area since 1901 when John and Daisy Bates established a sheep station which they named Glen Garrick. (Carrick?)

Newman sits at one end of the longest privately owned railway in the world. It runs for 426km to Port Hedland. It was a closed company town until 1981.

Temperatures and rainfall can vary greatly depending on cyclone activity in the area but the annual evaporation rate is said to be ten times higher that the rainfall. On average it only rains about 44 days a year - a great place if you like blue skies and sunshine.

The Mine

Around 100,000,000 tones of rock is mined each year which produces around 34,000,000 tones of ore. The excavated rock is carted out by around 100 huge trucks each capable of carrying between 190 to 200 tons. The rock is crushed twice on site reducing it to minus 100mms.

Trains taking the ore to the coast usually have around 180 (sometimes up to 240) cars each carrying 105 tons. There are between 3 and 5 3500hp diesel electric locomotives and all but 30 kilometres of the trip to the coast is downhill.

On arrival at the port the ore is crushed again before being spread on stockpiles. From here bulk ore carriers take the material all over the world but most of it goes to Japan and China.

 

HISTORY

 

Newman was built in 1969 (gazetted in 1972), primarily for the workers at nearby Mount Whaleback (which is Australia's largest iron ore project) and the unimaginatively named Orebody 29 mine.

The town takes it's name from the nearby Mount Newman which rises 1053m (1055?) above sea level. The peak was named after an explorer Aubrey Woodward Newman who died of typhoid in 1896 while attempting to map the area and was given the name by surveyor W.F. Rudall in the same year.

In 1957 iron ore (68.8% pure) was discovered by Athol Stanley (Stan) Hilditch (he was actually looking for manganese at the time) at the site at what is now the Mount Whaleback Mine.

Because there was a Government embargo on the export of iron ore from Australia, (They were afraid of the iron ore in Australia running out apparently?!? See Iron ore for more info on this.) Stan had to wait until 1961 when the ban was lifted to start developing the site. Even then his battles to get the site developed were not over. A long period of negotiation with possible venture partners ensued until finally he found himself in charge of an exploration crew of 100 men making a final assessment of the ore body.

Getting partners interested in developing the mine was very difficult. The common responses were; 'Too far from the coast' and 'Iron ore isn't worth much.' Stan persisted and eventually the project became reality.

The name Whaleback was given to the mine by geologist Tony Tomich who was looking at the wrong hill when he decided on the name.

The mine is the largest open cut in the world and tours are available by contacting the tourist information centre. The Hamersley Range is thought to contain over 33 billion tonnes of ore which means the mines have an almost indefinite life span. The long trains that take the ore to the coast for shipment can carry up to 18,000 tonnes a time. The mine produces around 30,000,000 tonnes of ore every year.

The Opthalmia Range north of Newman was named by Ernest Giles on an expedition in 1876 while he was suffering from temporary blindness. His affliction does not appear to have dampened his sense of humour.

 

TALL TALES AND TRUE

 

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MAP

 

 

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OTHER INFORMATION

 

ATTRACTIONS

 

Mount Whaleback Mine, Opthalmia Dam, Radio Hill Lookout, Waterhole Circuit, Mt. Newman, Karijini National Park, Mt. Meharry, Mining Museum, Silver Jubilee Museum, Ethel Gorge, Wanmanna Art Site.

 

BUILDINGS OF NOTE

 

Unknown.

 

ELECTORAL ZONES

 

State : Pilbara

Federal : Durack

 

OTHER INFO.

 

Postcode : 6753

Local Government : Shire of East Pilbara

 

PHOTOS

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