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Xstrata Coal has built a new section of railway on the main Southern Highlands line because there was a risk that its mining operations could damage a train tunnel.
The newly constructed 1.8 kilometre section of rail goes around the Redbank Tunnel on the Southern Highlands line between Tahmoor and Picton.
Xstrata Coal says there was a risk that its longwall mining activity at Tahmoor could cause subsidence and compromise the tunnel, so it proposed to relocate the rail line around it.
It received approval for the project in April, and began construction shortly after.
The new section of track was commissioned at the weekend and the sealing and rehabilitation of the old tunnel will be completed early next year.
This article first appeared on www.abc.net.au
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