In recent weeks, 18 abandoned open and dangerous mine shafts on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) public lands were closed in the town of Quartzsite. Bat gates and cupolas were installed over the shafts which close access to humans but allow ingress/egress to bat populations.
Quartzsite is usually a small town, but during the winter months it grows thousands of visitors who come to participate in the gem and mineral show during the months of January and February. The abandoned mine shafts, fill sites, and mine workings have been both attractive nuisances and public hazards for tourists and visitors.
“Visitors who are gold seekers look in existing shafts no matter how dangerous,” said BLM Colorado River District Hazardous Materials Coordinator Cathy White. “PRP Construction (Phoenix, AZ) did a fabulous job taking care of the hazards while retaining the historic flavor of the mining features. They installed ten cupolas and two bat gates, and leveled six mining fill sites.”