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Freeport operations halted after fatal accidents

6 June, 2013Freeport McMoRan’s Indonesian copper mine will not be able to resume operations until a probe into a deadly tunnel collapse is completed in two to three months.

PT Freeport Indonesia's Big Gossan underground training facility at its Grasberg mine in easternmost Papua province collapsed on 15 May, killing 28 workers. Freeport restarted open-pit mining production just over a week later.

Once another death occurred after a truck driver at the mine died in hospital after liquid ore material flowed into his vehicle on 1 June, the mining ministry told Freeport to stop until after its investigation was completed.

The length of stoppage would almost certainly hit Freeport's ability to meet its contractual obligations.

“After IndustriALL Global Union condemned Rio Tinto’s complicity and called for production at the mine to remain suspended, t took another death for Freeport to finally agree to delay the reopening of operations on the orders of the Government.”

Said Glen Mpufane IndustriALL Director for Mining and DGOJP.