Tailings dam of largest open pit copper mine in Canada is safe: Teck

The Highland Valley Copper mine is a copper and molybdenum operation owned by Teck Resources. (Image courtesy of Teck Resources)

Following a spill of 850,000 litres of process water caused by a frozen pipeline at Highland Valley Copper’s tailings facility in British Columbia’s Interior, Teck Resources spokesperson Chris Stannell said the safety and stability of the mine’s tailings dam were not affected.

In an email statement, Stannell also said that the April 8 incident didn’t cause any environmental impacts, as it was promptly reported and the damaged line was taken out of service for repairs.

He also said containment systems operated as designed and that the water, which had been used as part of mine operations, was returned to the tailings pond.

An investigation is underway and the company has committed to putting in place appropriate corrective actions.

Highland Valley, located near Logan Lake, is the largest open pit copper mine in Canada. It has been at the centre of some labour controversies in recent months, as union leaders have been denouncing continued safety incidents taking place at the site. However, Teck (TSX:TCK.A & TCK.B) (NYSE:TCK) argues that workplace accidents in the area are not higher than normal.

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