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Congratulations to the team of mine rescue volunteers from Vale Canada’s East Mines in capturing the gold hardhats, which were presented to the overall winners of the 64th annual Provincial Mine Rescue Competition. The event was held in Timmins earlier this month at the Goldcorp’s Dome Mine.
Seven teams, which won their regional competitions qualified for the finals. They were evaluated on their firefighting skills, first aid response, use of emergency equipment and decision making under the stress of a simulated emergency underground situation. The 2014 gold hardhat winners from Vale Canada in Sudbury included captain Lorne Plouffe, Will Davies, Justin Whitmore, Jonathan Hamilton, Fred Pelletier, Aime Gagnon, Jean Yves Doiron, Perry Simon and Mike Johnson.
The overall runner up was Compass Minerals Sifto Salt Mine in Goderich. Along with Vale East Mines and Sifto, other mines involved in the provincial competition included Goldcorp’s Red Lake Mine #2, Richmont Mines Island Gold Mine, Kidd Operations, a Glencore Company, St Andrew Goldfields and Sudbury Integrated Nickel Operations, a Glencore Company.
Denis Prevost from First Nickel’s Lockerby Mine earned the award for top technician and Jeff Sowerby, a mine rescue volunteer from Sifto, was honoured for 30 years of service to Ontario Mine Rescue. While Vale Canada East Mines also captured the team first aid award, St Andrew goldfields earned the team firefighting honour and Richmont Mines Island Gold Mine gained the team special equipment award.
Ontario Mine Rescue, which has its headquarters in Sudbury, was created in 1929. As part of Workplace Safety North, Ontario Mine Rescue has trained and equipped thousands of volunteers to fight fires, rescue injured personnel and respond to a variety of incidents in the province’s mines. WSN provides products and services to promote workplace health and safety in mining, forestry, and paper, printing and converting industries, as well as workplaces across Northern Ontario.
The organization equips and maintains a network of mine rescue stations across the province to strengthen and ensure emergency response capabilities. Ontario Mine Rescue holds annual regional and provincial competitions. This province’s mine rescue organization has served as a leader for establishing specialized safety and training programs in other Canadian jurisdictions and other countries.
Last fall, Ontario hosted the sixth International Mine Rescue Body (IMRB) conference in Niagara Falls and Sudbury from October 5 to 13. More than 160 delegates from 12 nations attended this international conference.
Vale operates six nickel-copper mines in the Sudbury area – Totten, Creighton, Stobie, Garson, Coleman and Copper Cliff North – a smelter and refinery. Vale Canada Limited, which directly employs about 4,000 people, is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Brazilian company Vale. Vale’s nickel mining and metals division is headquartered in Toronto.
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