Skip to content

Northern Ontario mines lauded for safety excellence

Glencore, Vale, Lake Shore Gold operations cited by national mining body
Nickel Rim South Mine, owned by Glencore – Sudbury Integrated Nickel Operations, is located northeast of Sudbury.

Three Northern Ontario mines have been cited for safety excellence by the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM).

Glencore – Sudbury Integrated Nickel Operations' Nickel Rim South Mine and Vale’s Coleman Mine, both in Sudbury, and Lake Shore Gold's Timmins West Mine in Timmins are the recipients of the CIM’s John T. Ryan Trophy, for having the lowest reportable injury frequency over the last year.

The awards were handed out on May 1 during the CIM’s annual conference, taking place April 30 to May 3 in Montreal.

Glencore SINO’s Nickel Rim South (NRS) Mine was cited in the National Trophy for Metal Mines category.

Operating at depths of between 1,100 and 1,720 metres below surface, Nickel Rim South has produced nickel and copper ore since 2010, for a total production of 1.3 million tonnes per year. The mine, which employs 280 people, is currently expected to operate until the first quarter of 2024.

“NRS has demonstrated its continued commitment to operational safety excellence across all levels of the organization and credits its success due to the collaboration, engagement and openness of its workforce, Joint Health and Safety Committee, supervision and management in achieving a common goal: safe work,” according to the CIM.

The mine has previously received four John T. Ryan Trophies in the Regional Ontario Metal Mine category, in 2013, 2014, 2017, and 2021.

A miner operates a jackleg drill at Vale's Coleman Mine in Sudbury. | Vale photo

Vale’s Coleman Mine received the Regional Metal Trophy – Ontario award.

The mine, which began production in 1970, produces copper and nickel, employs 500 people, and is known for using the largest Kiruna trolley electric truck fleet in the world.

In 2022, Coleman received the Regional John T. Ryan Award for the first time in its history.

“This is a well-deserved recognition for every employee in both mines, who work each day to ensure they, and their colleagues go home to their loved ones,” said Alfredo Santana, chief operating officer for Vale’s North Atlantic Operations, in a news release.

“The safety culture demonstrated by the team’s commitment to actively identifying and managing risks in the workplace with potential to cause harm, reinforces that our employees are living Vale’s behavior of being obsessed with safety and risk management.”

The company said Coleman Mine was recognized with a 0.42 injury rate over more than 1.2 million hours worked last year.

Lake Shore Gold’s Timmins West Mine | Lake Shore Gold photo

Lake Shore Gold's Timmins West Mine was cited for Mine Safety Technology.

Located 18 kilometres west of Timmins, the underground gold mine includes three gold deposits — the Timmins Deposit, the Thunder Creek Deposit, and the 144 Gap Deposit.

The primary access to the underground workings is via a concrete-lined shaft and a portal/ramp from surface, the CIM noted. The primary mining methods include transverse and longitudinal longhole stoping. Stopes are backfilled using both pastefill and unconsolidated development waste.

Ore is hoisted to surface via shaft and by truck to the ore stockpile, where it is loaded into over-the-road trucks for haulage to the Bell Creek mill, located 56 kilometres away.

Safety is the golden priority at TWM and is fundamental to what they do. The mine strives for continuous improvement and that their safety strategy is maintained as a core value of their operation.