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Hudbay halts Flin Flon mine

Flin Flon mill. Image from Hudbay Minerals.

Hudbay Minerals (TSX, NYSE: HBM) has temporarily suspended production at its 777 mine in Flin Flon, Manitoba, due to an incident that took place last Friday.

The incident occurred during routine maintenance of the hoist rope and skip, which is the bucket used to hoist ore from underground. The hoist rope detached from the skip, the company said, causing the skip to fall to the bottom of the shaft.

There were no injuries and all underground personnel were safely evacuated from the mine using the secondary ramp access, it added.

An inspection of the damage to the shaft is underway and it is expected to take several weeks to fully assess the damage and the remedial work needed.

In the meantime, Hudbay has notified its insurers and has implemented its business continuity plans to mitigate potential impacts to production from the Manitoba business unit. This includes reassigning equipment and personnel to the Lalor mine in Snow Lake and continuing to operate the zinc plant by processing available zinc concentrate inventory and optimizing the production of zinc concentrate from the Snow Lake operations.

“This was an unfortunate event, but we are thankful there were no injuries and that our safety protocols were closely followed. We have an exceptional team in Manitoba who have proven their ability to overcome challenging situations time and time again, and I am confident they will remedy this challenging situation safely and efficiently,” Hudbay president and CEO Peter Kukielski said in a press release.

The 777 mine (copper, zinc, gold, silver) in Flin Flon is currently approaching the end of its mine life after 15 years in operation, with final production anticipated in 2022.