Cerro Negro Sets New Safety Records
March 26, 2014 was a day much like any other at the Cerro Negro project in Santa Cruz, Argentina: a day without a lost-time injury (LTI). However, this seemingly typical day was in fact a major milestone: Cerro Negro surpassed the 3.0 million hour mark without an LTI. “It’s a testament to all of our departments, and each and every one of our employees and contractors working together to improve safety,” said Alastair Still, the project’s Director and General Manager. “And especially our Safety Department, who have guided us and provided the tools and training for safe gold production.”
Cerro Negro faces particular challenges because it’s an active construction site that is also running underground mining operations. More than 2,500 of the workers are contractors, and the workplace is constantly changing as the mine’s facilities are built. “There are approximately three times more contractors than employees,” Still said. “Each and every day, our people perform different and often complex tasks. Our project- wide diligence in understanding and managing the various risks is an important reason that we’ve achieved this milestone.”
In June 2013, the team met their previous record of 2.8 million consecutive work hours without an LTI and reduced Lost-Time Accident frequency by 71% over 2012. Medical Aid accident frequency also decreased by 75%, which helped the site earn the “Safety Bear Award” for the most improved safety at a Goldcorp project or operation.
“This safety performance milestone comes from a constant effort to improve, and the creation of a culture of only doing things safely,” said Still. “Our managers are all committed to safety and our front line supervisors are successfully leading the process every day. Our workers are fully committed to being accountable for their own safety and the safety of their co-workers. I want to commend all of our people for their attention to detail and for their dedication to only accepting safe production. We say ‘If we can’t do it safely, we won’t do it’…and all of our teams are owners of that.”
By the end of June 2014, Cerro Negro was at the 4.8 million hour mark without an LTI. The next million hour triumph is right around the corner and the team continues to establish new records every day.
Éléonore’s Winning Spirit
In May 2014, Éléonore’s mine rescue team took home both the first place award at the 52nd Quebec Provincial Mine Rescue Championship and the “Team Mission” award for the best performance in the field. The competition encompassed first aid, operations management, mission, theory and technical aspects. Éléonore’s mine rescue team showed determination, commitment, discipline, and most importantly, passion, accompanied by a spirit of continuous improvement for health and safety. Next year, Éléonore will host the 53rd Quebec Provincial Mine Rescue Championship.