Canadian mine rescue team best in the world

Friday, September 02, 2016

Kirkland Lake team crowned international champions 

Winners of 2016 International Mine Rescue CompetitionMine rescuers from Kirkland Lake Gold were crowned world champions by Workplace Safety North and Ontario Mine Rescue as the overall winners of the 10th International Mines Rescue Competition (IMRC2016-Canada) at the closing ceremonies in Sudbury.

During the competition August 19 to 25, 27 mine rescue teams from 13 nations were evaluated on their firefighting skills, first aid response, high angle rope rescue skills, use of emergency equipment, and decision-making ability under stress in a simulated underground emergency.

The international competition, held for the first time in Canada, is organized every two years to provide an opportunity for mine rescue organizations to share and improve mine rescue knowledge and practices through global cooperation. Previous IMRCs have been held around the world including Europe, Asia, and Australia.

The Kirkland Lake, Ontario, team of Terry McKnight, Jonathan Boutin, Hubert Gour, Alex Thompson, Norm Gannon Jr., Jason Dicaire, Ben Young, Lynne Thompson, and Scott Gillett, became the first Canadian team to win the event.

Ireland’s Boliden Tara Mines finished second, while the KGHM White Eagles, of Poland, finished third in the overall competition.

Kirkland Lake also won the Underground Emergency Simulation event, beating second-place Compass Minerals Goderich Mine, this year’s Ontario Mine Rescue champion; with Boliden Tara Mines in third place.

During the underground emergency scenario, five-member teams had to build a wall in a smoke-filled, heated environment to change mine ventilation due to a fire, and find two missing miners. One of the miners was found impaled on a length of rebar, further challenging teams’ first aid skills.

Compass Minerals Goderich Mine won the Theory event in which team members were tested on their knowledge of mine gases, firefighting, and emergency response activities.

Two other Canadian teams also earned honours. Cameco McArthur River from Saskatchewan placed second in the High Angle Rope Rescue event, and third in the Firefighting and First Aid events. Hometown favourites, Vale’s Sudbury West Mines placed third in High Angle Rope Rescue and Theory events.

“The 2016 International Mines Rescue Competition allowed the global mine rescue community to come together and share best practices in an extremely realistic environment," said Ted Hanley, General Manager of Ontario Mine Rescue at Workplace Safety North. "While the competition allowed some of the most highly trained mine rescuers in the world to test their skills, it also allowed teams from 13 nations to return home with leading-edge ideas, equipment, and procedures to help reduce the risk of underground mine rescue work."

IMRC2016-Canada was hosted by Workplace Safety North and Ontario Mine Rescueand sponsored by Vale, Goldcorp, Glencore, KGHM, Draeger, Equivital, the City of Greater Sudbury, and the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund.

Awards presented

Overall Winner

                First overall – Canada, Kirkland Lake Gold

                Second overall  – Ireland, Boliden Tara Mines

                Third overall – Poland, KGHM White Eagles

Emergency Underground Scenario

                First overall – Canada, Kirkland Lake Gold

                Second overall – Canada, Compass Minerals, Goderich Mine

                Third overall – Ireland, Boliden Tara Mines

Firefighting

                First overall – Poland, Bytom

                Second overall – USA, MSHA Mine Emergency Unit No. 1

                Third overall – Canada, Cameco McArthur River

First Aid     

                First overall – Australia, Peabody Energy Wambo Coal

                Second overall – Ireland, Boliden Tara Mines

                Third overall – Canada, Cameco McArthur River

High Angle Rope Rescue

                First overall – Poland, KGHM White Eagles

                Second overall – Canada, Cameco McArthur River

                Third overall – Canada, Vale Sudbury West Mines

Theory    

                First overall – Canada, Compass Minerals, Goderich Mine

                Second overall – Goldcorp Americas

                Third overall – Canada, Vale Sudbury West Mines

Technician

                First overall – Russia, EMERCOM

                Second overall – China, Shaanxi Coal and Chemical Group

                Third overall – USA, MSHA Mine Emergency Unit No. 1

 

For information on IMRC2016-Canada visit: IMRC2016.ca

Competition and team photos are available for download and use at: www.flickr.com/photos/imrc2016

For more information, contact tedhanley@workplacesafetynorth.ca 

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