Skip to content

Totten Mine resumes operations west of Sudbury

Activity halted in September after shaft was damaged, 39 miners trapped underground
Vale's Totten Mine in Sudbury

Operations have started back up at Vale’s Totten Mine, following repairs to a shaft that was damaged last September, temporarily detaining 39 miners underground as a result.

Vale announced on Feb. 22 that the nickel mine, located 40 kilometres west of Sudbury in the community of Worthington, has resumed operations and is ramping up production.

“We’re pleased that operations have safely resumed at Totten Mine,” said Gord Gilpin, head of Vale’s Ontario operations, in a news release.

“At the same time, we are doing everything we can to ensure an incident like this never occurs again. Safety is our top priority.”

Operations were halted on Sept. 27, after a bucket came loose and became lodged in the elevator shaft, blocking its use and temporarily trapping 39 miners underground.

A team of 58 responders from Vale's Mine Rescue team and Ontario Mine Rescue was called in to assist with extraction efforts, providing communications and support to employees.

Miners used a secondary egress ladder system to reach a point where they could be transported to surface.

By the morning of Sept. 29, all 39 miners had returned to surface safely. No injuries were reported.

Vale said a team of specialists has been working since September to safely extract the scoop and make repairs to the shaft.

The company said all the miners involved in the incident have returned to work, along with Totten Mine employees who had been deployed to other locations during the disruption.

“We have an incredible team supporting Totten Mine,” said Gilpin. “We are very proud of the exceptional rescue team effort and the work that has occurred since then to safely resume operations.”