April 22 (Reuters) - Production has been halted at Brazilian miner Vale SA’s Copper Cliff North nickel mine in Canada after a major piece of equipment malfunctioned.
No one was injured after a malfunction in the mine’s skip hoist mechanism, Vale spokesman Cory McPhee said. A skip hoist brings ore from underground to the surface.
McPhee said it was not known how long production would be halted at Copper Cliff North, which is one of six mines operated by Vale in Sudbury, Northern Ontario. Vale is looking into the cause of the malfunction.
Production figures for Copper Cliff North were not immediately available. Collectively Vale’s Sudbury nickel mines produced 69,000 tonnes of nickel in 2013, around a quarter of the Vale group’s total nickel output last year.
The Sudbury Star said the hoist failure happened on Sunday.
Earlier this month at Vale’s Copper Cliff smelter in Sudbury, one worker was killed and another injured. The company has not revealed the details of what happened. (Reporting by Nicole Mordant in Vancouver; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)