In August 2023, as part of its cultural heritage monitoring and management processes, Rio Tinto said it identified the fall of a Pilbara scrub tree and a one square meter rock from the overhang of a rock shelter in an area adjacent to the Nammuldi mine site in Western Australia.
As soon as they identified this, the company said it paused nearby blasting work which was occurring 150-m away, and notified the Traditional Owners of the land, the Muntulgura Guruma people.
On October 8, representatives from the Muntulgura Guruma people and Rio Tinto visited the Nammuldi rock shelter together. The assessments found no structural damage to the rock shelter itself, and no damage to cultural materials.
Rio Tinto said it deeply respects the Muntulgura Guruma people and apologized for this incident. The company said it will continue to work closely together to better understand what has happened.