Baja Mining Corp.
TSX VENTURE : BAJ

Baja Mining Corp.

October 19, 2005 09:30 ET

Baja Mining Corp.: Underground Test Mine Commenced at El Boleo Project

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(CCNMatthews - Oct. 19, 2005) - Baja Mining Corp. (the "Company") (TSX VENTURE:BAJ) is pleased to advise that it has commenced an underground test mine at the El Boleo Project, Baja California Sur, Mexico. The test mine will consist of approximately 400 meters of development headings from which a series of test panels will be mined utilizing a bord and pillar mining method. Development headings are being driven in the ore horizon utilizing a continuous mining machine (a 54 tonne DOSCO 1300 roadheader), similar to those used in coal, potash and salt mines. For more information on this method please visit: www.bajamining.com/projects/mining_methods.

"The test mining area selected represents most of the underground conditions likely to be encountered on Boleo and will provide us with valuable information on how this high production, mechanized method will work. The start of test mining along with the recently announced financing is moving Baja significantly further along the path to production." - John W. Greenslade, P.Eng., President

Inspection of the mantos (a flat lying, bedded deposit; either a sedimentary bed or a replacement stratabound ore body) in drill core and in recent underground exposures by geotechnical consultants and mining experts retained by the Company suggests that conventional continuous miners should be able to achieve very high production rates The Company recognises the importance of understanding how the proposed systems will perform through a range of conditions such as in previously mined areas and in areas of steeper dips, undulating floors or faulting. The test mine site is in manto 3.

The site was selected because:

- Manto 3 in this area has a range of working heights similar to the proposed initial production areas.

- The entries are off a steep hillside so that a reasonable working depth of 60 to 70 metres can be reached with minimal development.

- The local manto dips of 8 degrees to 10 degrees are similar to the proposed production areas.

- The planned development and pillar extraction sites include both virgin ground and previously mined areas.

- It is adjacent to a major regional fault which has a vertical displacement of 7 metres. It is planned to drive at least one heading through the fault to assess ground stability.

The test mine was designed by Australian Mine Design & Development (AMDAD), a consultant specialising in the design of high production Australian coal mines - utilising continuous miners and both longwall and shortwall production units. The test is being conducted with the assistance of Agapito Associates, a specialist geotechnical and mining consultant. It is designed to provide information regarding:

- Mining geotechnical conditions. Monitoring of the roof, floor and side walls during and after mining will provide data for qualitative and numerical modelling of the manto and surrounding strata. This will provide a basis for designing development and production pillar sizes and extraction sequences and will assist in determining the suitability of the mantos for shortwall mining.

- Assessment of ground support requirements. In particular it will gauge the effectiveness of rock bolting as the primary support mechanism.

- Continuous miner productivity. Cutting rates will be measured by AMDAD and used for modelling production designs and calibrated against similar conditions in currently operating mines.

- Assessment of the manto material response to mining. This is to gauge the potential issues for mine production, trafficability of the underground roadways and materials handling on the conveyors.

US$1.5 million has been budgeted for the trial to ensure that it returns useful and reliable information.

Preliminary information from the mining trial suggests that the continuous mining machine is achieving very high hourly production rates and that the current roof bolting technique, which also utilizes steel mesh support, is an effective ground control system in main haulage areas.

John W. Greenslade, P.Eng., President of the Company and a Qualified Person, has reviewed the technical disclosure contained herein and accepts responsibility for such disclosure.

ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF BAJA MINING CORP.

JOHN W. GREENSLADE, PRESIDENT

The statements made in this News Release may contain certain forward-looking statements. Actual events or results may differ from the Company's expectations. Certain risk factors may also affect the actual results achieved by the Company.

The TSX Venture Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

Contact Information

  • Baja Mining Corp.
    John Greenslade
    President
    (604) 685-2323
    (604) 629-5228 (FAX)
    www.bajamining.com