In its Q1 2020 results, Agnico Eagle reports that as expected, gold production at its Goldex mine in Val-d’Or, Quebec in the first quarter decreased slightly when compared to the prior-year period primarily due to the temporary suspension of operations as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic ordered by the Government of Quebec on March 23, 2020. However, this was partially offset by increased production resulting from the utilisation of the mine’s Rail-Veyor system.
The utilisation of the Rail-Veyor continues to improve with a new quarterly performance record for hauled tonnage of approximately 7,144 t/d (based on 82 days of operation in the first quarter of 2020). In addition, a new underground Rail-Veyor maintenance facility is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2020. This new facility is expected to have a positive impact on future Rail-Veyor productivity.
Mining operations at Goldex progressively restarted on April 15, 2020 after the Government of Quebec permitted mining activities to resume. Milling activities resumed in late April 2020.
Installation of the energy-efficient 3 km underground Rail-Veyor system began as part of Goldex’s new Deep 1 project which was started up in July 2017. The Rail-Veyor system was installed to haul material at lower operational costs than other alternatives such as trucks or conveyors. As mine production has ramped up, a total of six Rail-Veyor trains are being used in a fully automated and synchronised operation.