Mount Polley Mining Corporation plans to lay off about 78 employees by the end of 2018 to pay for work it still has to complete because of the Aug. 2014 tailings breach. Photo submitted

Staged layoffs at Mount Polley in 2018 will impact 78 jobs

Mount Polley Mine is beginning staged lay-offs to pay for projects it must complete because of the 2014 breach.

Imperial Metals is beginning staged lay offs at its Mount Polley Mine near Williams Lake that will impact about 78 full-time positions by the end of 2018.

The move comes in order to pay for projects the company has to complete because of the 2014 tailings breach, Mount Polley Mining Corporation general manager Dale Reimer told the Tribune Wednesday.

“We are trying to get cash positive for 2018 because we have some big projects we have to do to keep the mine going,” Reimer said.

Those projects include removing the tailings that were put into the Springer Pit after the mine breach and more restoration work to Hazeltine Creek because of the damage caused by the breach.

“We also have more work to do to lift our tailings dam a bit,” Reimer said. “We have to be cash positive to do those projects for the long-term mine liability.”

“Approximately 16 people will be laid off in the first quarter,” Reimer confirmed.

In the second quarter the company will lay off another 26 people, in the third quarter an additional 16 and in the fourth quarter approximately 10 more, he confirmed.

It is also expected that an additional 39 people who were working under a temporary contract that expires in January 2018 will no longer be working at the mine after next week, Reimer said.

For the most the part, the restoration work is done by the company, except for dredging of the Springer Pit which has be to be done by experts, Reimer explained.

“We don’t have the equipment or the knowledge. It’s very specific work.”

In the last six months of 2018, the mine will be using its stock piles and won’t be doing any additional mining, Reimer noted.

Presently there are 337 people working at the mine.

If the mine can get all the work done that is required it is hoped the number of employees will be back up to that level in the future, Reimer said.

United Steelworkers Union Local 2017 past president Paul French declined comment on the lay-offs because the union is in contract talks with the company.

Read more: Mount Polley shares remediation plans

Just Posted

Alberni university zeroes in on disability and poverty

BY MIKE YOUDS SPECIAL TO THE NEWS The road to poverty can… Continue reading

Celebrate cycling in Port Alberni during Bike to Work and School Week

Numerous ‘celebration stations’ are planned for May 28 to June 2

Ahousaht welcomes massive Surfrider Canada conference to Meares Island near Tofino

“It was the first time we’ve all come together.”

Alberni RCMP kept busy with 170 calls over May long weekend

Detachment answers calls from fatal vehicle crash to man with a gun, trailer thefts

Alberni pub owner kicks off new event for car lovers

Car enthusiast Helen Poon debuts Cars and Coffee on May 27

Vancouver Island girl scores with winning song for BC Summer Games

‘Colours’ is a perfect theme for 2018 BC Summer Games

B.C. pipeline goes ahead despite scrapped Pacific Northwest LNG

NEB approves amendment for $1.4-billion natural gas North Montney Mainline Project

Update: Wildfire northwest of Kamloops jumps from 60 to 800 hectares

Ground crews and aircraft are responding to an estimated 50 hectare wildfire approximately 55 kilometers northwest of Kamloops, near the Deadman Vidette Road.

Feds limit chinook fishery to help killer whale recovery

Chinook is main food source for only 76 southern residents killer whales left

B.C. mom who died just before daughter’s wedding wanted family to be happy: twin

Ann Wittenberg was pulled into the ocean while on a surf board in Tofino last weekend

Courtenay-Alberni MP calls for lifeguards at popular surf spot near Tofino

The Pacific Rim National Park Reserve is defending its decision to cancel the surf guard program.

Harvey Weinstein to surrender in sex misconduct probe: officials

Would be first criminal charge against Weinstein since scores of women came forward

Fuel truck crash closes B.C. highway, sends two to hospital

The Trans-Canada Highway on Vancouver Island is expected to be closed until Thursday evening

Media are not an arm of the police, Vice lawyer tells Supreme Court hearing

Ben Makuch challenges Ontario Court of Appeal ruling that he must give materials for stories to RCMP

Most Read