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Former Sudbury Vale executive resigns from Trevali Mining after mine flood disaster

Ricus Grimbeek departs with Vancouver zinc miner in creditor protection and up for sale
Ricus Grimbeek (Vale)
Ricus Grimbeek (File photo)

Ricus Grimbeek, the former head of Vale’s Sudbury operations, has stepped down as president and CEO of Trevali Mining months after a fatal flash flooding accident at its mine in Burkina Faso last spring.

Grimbeek’s resignation was announced Sept. 16 by the Vancouver-based zinc and lead mining company, now under creditor protection and for up sale.

His departure comes in the wake of the death of eight workers at Trevali’s Perkoa Mine in the West African country last April after water from heavy rainfall breached the berms surrounding the underground mine. Eight workers died.

The mine manager and a contract manager were convicted of involuntary manslaughter. Both received suspended sentences. The investigation of the flood disaster by authorities in that country continues.

Grimbeek joined Vale at its chief operating officer for Canada, the U.K., and Asian Refineries in May 2018. After a short tenure in Sudbury, he departed in February 2019 and joined Trevali in April of that year. He was appointed to the board of directors in March 2020.

Trevali filed for creditor protection under CCAA (Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act) on Aug. 19.

A news release from Trevali said with the sales process underway for the company’s Rosh Pinah Mine in Nambia and Caribou Mine in New Brunswick, “the Board and Mr. Grimbeek determined that it was the appropriate time for him to step away from Trevali.”

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