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Zinc mine ‘pausing’ operations

By Eddie West

Staff Writer

Nyrstar’s Middle Tennessee Mines (zinc mine) plans to “temporarily pause in production operations”, beginning this month.

“Nyrstar’s Middle Tennessee Mines in Gordonsville, announces it will temporarily pause production operations on November 30,” company officials said in a statement released to the media, Tuesday (October 31) and posted on its website.

A “temporary pause in production” will mean hundreds of laid off employees.

According to the company’s website, 350 people are employed with the company, most of which are expected to be laid off indefinitely.

The company says it will maintain a minimal staff while production is halted.

“This decision comes after a thorough review and is in direct response to significantly weakened market conditions and inflationary impacts on input costs and operating margin,” company officials say. “As a result, employee layoffs will occur and Nyrstar plans to offer some employees alternative employment opportunities at its East Tennessee Mines and other mining operations in the U.S. During the pause in production operations, a limited number of staff will remain on site to ensure a safe and efficient ramp down of production activities and transition to essential services.”

The local mines are known as Nyrstar’s Middle Tennessee Mines and include headquarters in Gordonsville, Cumberland Mine in Carthage and Elmwood Mine in Elmwood.

“We understand the decision to pause production at the Middle Tennessee Mines will have a significant impact on our employees, their families and the local community. This decision was not taken lightly and we acknowledge the challenges this may present. These actions in no way reflect the skills and commitment of our talented team at Middle Tennessee Mines, but are a direct response to the current business conditions. We thank all members of our team for their continued support and firmly believe that this pause is necessary in these challenging market conditions in order to ensure the long-term sustainability and profitability of the mines,” said Bill Hart, Nyrstar’s Vice President Environment, Health & Safety, Human Resources and Corporate Affairs for North American Mining.

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