More mining deaths in Timmins than any other mining city in Ontario in past five years – by By Len Gillis (Timmins Times – April 5, 2012)

Death of Travor King was the sixth local miner killed since 2007

More mining deaths have occurred in Timmins in the past five years than anywhere else in Ontario. That information provided by the Ontario Ministry of Labour indicates that 11 workers have died in Ontario mines since 2007. Six of those deaths were in Timmins.

The most recent was the death of miner Trevor King, 26, who died Monday after being hit by a loose rock while loading explosives at the Lake Shore Gold (LSG) Timmins Mine. That was among the information released Tuesday by company officials who held an informal news conference at their Highway 101 West offices in Timmins.

“Trevor King was fatally injured while loading a development round on the 730-metre level of our Timmins Mine,” said Dan Gagnon, Lakeshore’s senior vice president of operations.

A “round’ is the series of drill holes left in the rock face in the mine tunnel after a miner has set up and drilled a pattern of holes in preparation for blasting. Gagnon said the round was drilled using a jumbo drill machine and King was in the process of loading stick powder into the holes when the incident occurred. Trevor was struck by a piece of rock,” Gagnon said.

An Ontario Ministry of Labour report was filed on the incident.

“The Ministry of Labour was notified of an incident in relation to a worker at Lake Shore Gold Timmins West Mine. The worker was struck by a piece of loose, and rendered unconscious and taken to Timmins and District Hospital. The worker has died,” said labour ministry spokesman William Lin.

“Loose” is the accepted term for a piece of rock that can fall from the roof of the tunnel, or from the walls, or the rock face, usually after the process of drilling or blasting.

“Our ministry has dispatched inspectors to the scene to investigate, as well as a ground control engineer. The scene remains secure, and our investigation continues,” said Lin.

Gagnon said the incident is being investigated by LSG’s joint health and safety committee along with the Ministry of Labour

“Our focus over the last two days has been to support Trevor’s family and our employees,” said Gagnon.

King, who was in his mid-twenties and is a native of Larder Lake, was the father of two young children. Despite his youth, Gagnon said King was regarded as an experienced drift miner, adding that men like Trevor King are not put into development headings unless they know what they’re doing.
Gagnon said that counseling is being provided to employees who worked with King.

“My heart and prayers go out to Trevor and his family,” said Gagnon. King’s funeral service is set for 2:00 p.m. Friday at the Miron Wilson funeral home in Timmins.

Gagnon said production was shut down at the mine Monday to give all employees a break and some time to adjust to the loss of a co-worker.

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