2023 Annual Ontario Mine Rescue Provincial Competition to be held at Hagersville Mine

Wednesday, June 14, 2023

District winners compete at provincial mine rescue competition

  Group of mine rescue volunteers
  2023 Ontario Mine Rescue Onaping district competition winners from Glencore Fraser and Nickel Rim South Mines. Eight teams will compete at the provincial competition June 13 to 16 at the Canadian Gypsum Company Mine in Hagersville, Ontario.

Eight mine rescue teams from across the province will compete this week at the 72nd annual Ontario Mine Rescue Provincial Competition, from June 13 to 16, at Canadian Gypsum Company (CGC), Hagersville Mine.

The teams will test their emergency response knowledge and skills in the competition hosted by CGC, and organized by Ontario Mine Rescue (OMR), a part of Workplace Safety North. 

Competitions assess the teams’ mining emergency response knowledge, firefighting skills, first aid response, use of emergency equipment and decision-making ability under stress during a mining emergency. 

Unlike the District Competitions which are held in spectator-friendly hockey arenas with a maze of simulated mine workings constructed on the arena floor, the Provincial Competition sends teams into an actual operating underground mine.  

Technical judges hidden throughout the mine evaluate teams against a pre-determined list of criteria based on the policies and procedures of the provincial mine rescue guidelines.  

“The provincial mine rescue competition is one of the most important annual events on the calendar for the mining industry” notes Ted Hanley, Vice President for Ontario Mine Rescue.  

“These are the eight most highly trained mine emergency response teams in Ontario, being challenged with an extremely realistic and challenging mock mine emergency scenario. Despite having never stepped foot in the host underground mine, these team members will put years of mine rescue training into action and resolve a complicated multi-stage mine emergency.  

“The event is the province’s evaluation of standardized emergency response expectations for all mines, from Red Lake to Windsor and everywhere in between,” says Hanley. “That the teams are capable of successfully tackling this challenge without any advanced information prior to arriving at the mine site is a testament to the extensive training and preparation the teams engage in on a year-round basis.” 

The winners of the OMR District Competition held in May will compete in the Provincial Competition which opens Tuesday, June 13, with a knowledge evaluation, and continue Wednesday and Thursday, June 14 and 15, with a simulated underground emergency. The winning teams will be announced Friday, June 16, at the awards ceremony in Hamilton.

2023 Provincial Competing Teams 

Algoma District
Newmont Borden Mine team 
Captain Patrick Gilbert, Vice Captain Jay Chenier, Ryan Levac (#2), Hank Harrison (#3), Tristan Larcher (#4), Nick Swanson (#6), Perry Canning (#7), and Briefing Officer Kyle Besnier 
Winning Technician: Kyle Oullette (Alamos Gold, Island Gold Mine)

Kirkland Lake District 
Agnico Eagle Mines Macassa Mine team 
Captain Nick Perrier, Vice Captain Hubert Gour, Jackson Lafrance (#2), Jean Francois Racine (#3), Denis Dion (#4), Carlie Dewar (#6), Basil Eraif (#7), and Briefing Officer April Belecque. 
Winning Technician: Jason Dicaire (Agnico Eagle Mines Macassa Mine)

Onaping District 
Glencore team 
Captain Julien Lalande, #2 Jesse Legault, #3 Neil Poulin, #4 Aaron Boutet, Vice-Captain Shawn O’Brian, #6 Pat Robitaille, #7 Xavier Bruneau, and Briefing Officer Bleir Millions. 
Winning Technician: JY Doiron (Vale East Mines)

Red Lake District
Newmont Musselwhite Mine team 
Captain Phil Mullin, Vice Captain Alexa Dumaine, Scott Lawson (#2), Leaf Watson (#3), Nick Gosselin (#4), Jimmy Sinclair (#6), Matt Arges (#7) and Briefing Officer Ryan Lepage. 
Winning Technician: Darren Bullied (Evolution Mining, Red Lake Operations)

Southern District
Compass Minerals Goderich Mine team 
Captain David Kelly, Vice Captain Joel Paquette, Cody Lobb (#2), Gordon Bailey (#3), Kyle Ropp (#4), Ken Nguyen (#6), Amanda Haak, Shea Bradley, and Briefing Officer Jason Phillip. 
Winning Technician: Mike Fredriksson, an independent mine rescue technician, won the top technician award for the Southern district.

Sudbury District
Vale East Mines team 
Captain Kordell Hull, #2 Will Davies, #3 Ryan Tinker, #4 Jason Cook, Vice-Captain Jeremy Faulkner, #6 Will Langois, #7 Loni-May Barlow, and Briefing Officer Shawn St. Louis.

Thunder Bay District
Impala Canada Lac Des Isles Mine team
Captain Brad Kemp, Vice Captain Cody Vold, Dillon Bradley (#2), Chris Cameron (#3), Ethan Gorman (#4), Devin Jackson (#6), Dave Chony (#7), and Briefing Officer Tyler Williams. 
Winning Technician: Monika Jorgenson (Impala Canada Lac Des Isles Mine)

Timmins District 
Lakeshore Gold Timmins West-Bell Creek Mines team 
Captain Adam Weagle, Vice Captain Natalie Lafontaine, Shane Sullivan (#2), Brandon Duhan (#3), Blade Cashmore (#4), Serge Roy (#6), and Briefing Officer Terry Roy. 
Winning Technician: Mike Bennett (Kidd Mine)

About Ontario Mine RescueOMR was established in 1929, a year after an underground fire at the Hollinger Mine in Timmins claimed the lives of 39 miners. Provincial competitions began in 1950 as a means of evaluating participating mines, ensuring their decision-making and response to an underground emergency met the standards and best practices of the day. Mine rescue team members, the backbone of Ontario Mine Rescue, are volunteer mine workers trained by Mine Rescue Officers to respond to all types of mine emergencies including fires, explosions, and falls of ground.

For more information, visit Ontario Mine Rescue.