14 years ago Donnie was handed an advert

14 years ago Donnie Mitchell took his first step on site at BHP Mitsubishi Alliance’s Peak Downs Mine as an electrical apprentice.

Having relocated from Mackay to get the gig, he has worked in construction, the tyre bays, as a high voltage electrician and in the reliability department at site, where he is now the lead maintenance reliability engineer.  

“I always wanted to be an electrician at school, I did work experience and then got shown the advert for the apprenticeships out here – I had no idea about mining and I moved to Moranbah – that was 14 years ago,” he said.

“I just loved it here and I’ve been here ever since.”

Donnie said he has loved plenty about his time at Peak Downs Mine, including the challenging work, lifestyle balance and mostly the people.

“I work with a lot of good people and have made lifelong friends,” he said.

“There have been so many learning opportunities, and development opportunities.”

Now, as the lead maintenance reliability engineer, Donnie said part of his role is to look at the past performance of equipment, and how they can be maintained simpler and safer.  

Donnie said working on the electrics of a dragline is exciting – because you’re finding faults in the control room which is the same size as a house.

“You have to work with a lot of different people – there’s a lot of fault finding and different things you’ve got to be across – you get a lot of exposure to different systems and technologies – I like the challenge,” he said.

Donnie said he is proud to be a part of Peak and share in the site’s history.

“It’s a pretty crazy thought to think this operation has been going for 50 years,” he said.

“I’ve worked with a lot of fellas who have been here over 40 years. There’s a lot of history, good memories and achievements.

“It’s been a good place to work.”

This year Peak Downs Mine celebrates 50 years of operating. Keep an eye out for more employee profiles as we celebrate this milestone.