Ontario Mine Rescue
|Shawn Shail||Jason Leger|
Welcome to Ontario Mine Rescue
Workplace Safety North is pleased to announce Jason Leger and Shawn Shail have joined Ontario Mine Rescue as Mine Rescue Officers.
Leger will be stationed at the Timmins Mine Rescue Station and will share responsibility with Timmins MRO Danny Taillefer for oversight of all training and emergency response activities within the district.
Shail will be stationed at the Kirkland Lake Mine Rescue Station and will share responsibility with Kirkland Lake MRO Wayne Baker for oversight of all training and emergency response activities within that district. He will also deliver Ontario Mine Rescue training courses around the province as required.
Leger joins OMR from Goldcorp Ltd. Porcupine Gold Mines in Timmins, having held front line supervision roles over the past decade. He received his Introductory Mine Rescue training in 2007 while at Kidd Mine and has served as an active mine rescue volunteer in Timmins District since. Leger holds Technician, Advanced and Management Level Mine Rescue certifications, and in 2013 was Captain of the Ontario Mine Rescue Provincial Competition Champion winning team.
Shail joins OMR from St. Andrews Goldfields Ltd. in Matheson, where he held various underground and administrative roles including Front Line Supervisor and Continuous Improvement Specialist. He received his Introductory Mine Rescue training in 2010 while at St.Andrews and has served as an active mine rescue volunteer in Kirkland Lake District since then. Shail holds Technician and Advanced Ontario Mine Rescue certifications.
Linking Mine Rescuers for 10 years
Ten years ago this November, Ontario Mine Rescue linked to its volunteers with the first, then unnamed, edition of this newsletter.
It officially became The Link Line in August 2006, thanks to a suggestion from former senior mine rescue officer Ron Eveson. He explained that the link line was introduced to OMR after the East Malartic Fire in 1947 to keep teams together.
“The name was, and still is, totally appropriate,” says Alex Gryska, the head of Ontario Mine Rescue at the time. “We wanted a communications tool that would connect us, everyone in mine rescue, but especially the volunteers.”
OMR wanted to keep volunteers better informed about what was happening in mine rescue in various parts of the province, and what changes they would encounter as mine rescuers, Gryska says.
The inaugural two-page issue introduced the MSA Thermal Imaging Camera and the CAREvent emergency resuscitator, which had been undergoing field tests. It also gave readers the opportunity to bid for a flame safety lamp, which were being replaced by the ITX gas monitor.
But just as important was the need to recognize volunteers, Gryska says. Not just for winning competitions, he says, but for everything they do – serving on the Mine Rescue Technical Advisory Committee, long years of service, and much more.
The first issue also identified members of the TAC, and announced the creation of the Distinguished Action Award for mine rescuers who save the life of another person, on or off the job.
Though the intent was for The Link Line to be issued several times a year, it wasn’t until 2007 that two issues were released, while a year later the newsletter commenced its’ three time a year schedule – spring, summer and winter.
The summer edition traditionally focuses on the Provincial Mine Rescue Competition in June, while stories in the spring and winter editions cover mine rescue news, volunteers and staff, changes in equipment, research and more.
The Link Line was designed as a PDF so it could be easily and quickly distributed by email, as well as printed for posting on bulletin boards or as a handout. This ensured it was distributed to as wide a network of mine rescuers as possible.
This has not only helped the newsletter become a success within Ontario, says Gryska, but has helped earned it, and OMR, an international following.While the initial editions were rather brief, only two to four printed pages, The Link Line has grown to a steady six to eight pages in length.
And The Link Line is no longer the only communication link with volunteers. The website has expanded, including regular stories on the home page, links to photo albums from provincial mine rescue competitions, mine rescue videos, and links to news reports on Ontario Mine Rescue.
Ontario Mine Rescue, a part of Workplace Safety North (WSN), has trained and equipped thousands of volunteers who have fought fires, rescued injured personnel, and responded professionally to a wide array of incidents in the province's mines over the past eight decades.
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.
Our role includes delivering training to first responders, providing consultations, conducting periodic audits, ensuring WSN-owned equipment is maintained to manufacturers' recommended standards, and providing advice during mine emergencies.
Since its creation in 1929, Ontario Mine Rescue has established a reputation for high standards in training, equipment and emergency response, as well as in the development of safe, effective mine rescue practices. We have served as a role model for the establishment of training and safety programs for mine rescue organizations in other provinces and countries.
WSN maintains a Mine Rescue Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) that provides advice and guidance to Ontario Mine Rescue. Under the leadership of the committee, we remain committed to continual improvement, ensuring the mining industry's mine rescue needs are met.