THUNDER BAY – MINING – Mine rescue teams across Ontario, including four Northwestern Ontario mines will mark the 90th anniversary of Ontario Mine Rescue, by testing their emergency response skills and knowledge May 8 to 9 in district mine rescue competitions.
Five teams and equipment technicians from Red Lake and Thunder Bay districts will compete at the Cochenour Arena May 8 and 9.
Competing will be:
• New Gold Inc., Rainy River Mine
• North American Palladium, Lac Des Isle Mine
• Newmont Goldcorp, Musselwhite Mine
• Newmont Goldcorp, Red Lake Gold Mines Team #1
• Newmont Goldcorp, Red Lake Gold Mines Team #2
All technicians and the Thunder Bay District teams will compete Wednesday, May 8, while the Red Lake District teams will compete Thursday, May 9.
Ontario Mine Rescue was established in 1929, a year after an underground fire at the Hollinger Mine in Timmins claimed the lives of 39 miners. Over the ensuing years, OMR has evolved from a fire service to full emergency response service for all underground emergencies.
The competitions organized by Ontario Mine Rescue, a part of Workplace Safety North, will test the teams’ knowledge, firefighting skills, first aid response, use of emergency equipment, and decision-making ability under stress in a simulated underground emergency.
The public and media are welcome to attend district competitions to give communities a chance to see highly trained volunteers in action. Other competitions will take place across Ontario on the same dates:
• Sudbury & Onaping districts – McClelland Community Centre, Copper Cliff
• Southern District – Goderich Memorial Arena, Goderich
• Timmins & Kirkland Lake districts – Archie Dillon Sportsplex, Timmins
• Algoma District – Michipicoten Memorial Community Centre, Wawa
The winner of each district competition will compete in the 2019 Provincial Competition, June 4 to 7, at Newmont Goldcorp’s Red Lake Gold Mines in Red Lake.
Mine rescue competitions, which started in Ontario in 1950, are as much intensive learning opportunities as a chance to test emergency response capabilities. The competitions ensure that mine rescue volunteers across the province are trained to the same high standards.
Mine rescue team members, the backbone of Ontario Mine Rescue, are volunteer mine workers trained by Mine Rescue Officers to respond to all types of mine emergencies including fires, explosions and falls of ground.
Under the authority of the Occupational Health and Safety Act and headquartered in Sudbury, Ontario Mine Rescue staffs equips and maintains a network of mine rescue stations across the province that ensure mines within a specified geographic area have adequate emergency response capability.
Workplace Safety North provides products and services to promote workplace health and safety in the mining, forestry, and paper, printing and converting industries, as well as workplaces across Ontario.