Performance improvement at the Bell Mine

CIM Bulletin, Vol. 83, No. 939, 1990

M.C. Ethier and A.L. Laramie, Bell Mine, Noranda Minerals Inc., Granisle, British Columbia

The Granisle and Bell Copper mines were offidallyput into production in 1966 and 1972, respectively. The Granisle Mine was purchased in late 1979 by Noranda and the two operations were amalgamated as one division. Both mines were closed in 1982 after sustaining heavy financial losses during a period of low copper prices beginning in 1981. This paper describes the resumption of operations at the Bell Mine in 1985 after its shutdown period of three years and the dramatic and sustained improvements in productivity and efficiency realized as a result of a commitment by employees and management to the application of Participative Management and Employee Involvement principles. After a general description of the effects of such a philosophy on the operation as a whole, and a comparison to the operation's last full year as a producer, it deals with the practice of this philosophy in the maintenance department at the Bell Mine and the superb results realized.
Mots Clés: Maintenance, Mine management, Human resources, Employee relations.