Tim Eaton completed a BSc in Civil Engineering from the University of New Brunswick in 1978. He then worked as a civil engineering consultant and construction engineer on municipal and pipeline projects in Alberta from 1978 to 1983. In 1986 he completed a MSc in Civil Engineering from the University of Alberta. He specialized in geotechnical engineering with emphasis on soils and hard rock mechanics.
From 1986 to 1991 Mr. Eaton worked as a geotechnical engineer in the mining industry. During that period he was employed with consultants Steffen, Robertson and Kirsten in Vancouver, Island Copper Mine on Vancouver Island and subsequently Ok Tedi Mine in Papua New Guinea. Since the start of 1992 Mr. Eaton has been with the British Columbia Ministry of Energy and Mines as manager, geotechnical engineering for mines in the province. He has extensive knowledge and experience with design, construction and operation of waste dumps, tailings facilities and pit slopes. The open pit coal mines of the Canadian Rockies in British Columbia construct some of the largest waste dumps in the world, situated in mountain valleys and side slopes. These large structures must be built to ensure safety of equipment operators on dump platforms and or protection of infrastructure or environment below the dumps.
The Design and Operation of Large Waste Dumps interim guidelines and reports were produced out of concerns about the performance of the coal mine waste dumps. Mr. Eaton chaired the Mine Dump Committee which provided the direction and review for the production of this series of reports (11 to date) and funded by the governments of Canada, British Columbia and the mining industry.