Osisko Mining (OSK-T) saw its shares initially drop after reporting a fire that broke out at its flagship Canadian Malartic gold operation in Quebec on Wednesday night.
The company said the fire started around midnight in the cyclone separator portion of the Canadian Malartic mill, which firefighters contained and extinguished at about 4:30 a.m. on Thursday.
“Preliminary indications are that the fire at Canadian Malartic was started by welding in proximity to the number four cyclone area and spread to the mill roof of that sector,” the company updated the market late Thursday afternoon. It added that the SAG or ball mills appear to have been unharmed.
Osisko’s staff began assessing the damage early this morning. The company predicts the mill will be shut down for up to three weeks as a result, and will continue to keep investors updated.
None of the roughly 50 workers at the plant were injured during the incident.
“Regular mining operations are being maintained outside of the mill area and all employees are back at work,” the company said, adding no industrial chemicals were released in the environment during the fire.
On Wednesday the company closed down 6.5% to $8.39, and late this afternoon shares, after dropping nearly 7% during the morning, bounced up to $8.15 as over 5.6 million shares changed hands.
Osisko plans to report its first quarter results after market close on Thursday.
The Malartic gold operation is located in the heart of the Abitibi gold belt, about 20 km west of Val d’Or.
Malartic poured its first gold last April, while commercial production started a month later in May. The mine churned out 200,137 oz. gold by year-end 2011.
For this year, Osisko had anticipated output of 610,000 and 670,000 oz. gold from Malartic.
It had estimated annual production for the first five full years of operation averaging 625,000 oz. gold.
© 1915 - 2013 The Northern Miner. All Rights Reserved.