Coeur Rochester Mine celebrated two achievements June 13 – 150 million ounces poured and 2.5 years of no lost-time accidents.
Rochester is about 13 miles northeast of Lovelock in Pershing County. Coeur Mining Inc., based in Chicago, has operated Rochester since 1986. The mine recovers gold and silver through a heap leach process.
“This is a heck of a celebration for us,” said General Manager Robert Stepper.
He cited the production celebration and the safety record, which equals 1.5 million man hours without a lost-time accident.
“We have a tremendous workforce,” he said. “It’s the safest workforce I’ve ever worked with. The level of safety consciousness at this site is outstanding. That probably derives from a good number of the people who work here are related to each other. When you talk about being a family, it’s a family up here. They’re just great employees. They’re great to work with and great to have around. I couldn’t be luckier to have them.”
Coeur President and CEO Mitch Krebs thanked everyone for attending.
“It’s great to be out here in the Silver State at the largest primary silver mine in the state,” he said. “Thirty-one years is an impressive mine life and 150 million ounces is amazing. I don’t know about you guys, but I bet there’s another 150 million ounces to come out of this place over the next 30 years.”
The mine processes 80,000 tons of earth a day, said Assistant General Manager Greg Robinson. Rochester produces about 5 million ounces of silver and about 50,000 ounces of gold each year.
Rochester began production in 1986. It employs about 300 people.
Several officials from around the state attended the event.
Nevada Division of Minerals Administrator Rich Perry said it was important for him to be there for two reasons.
“For me personally, because I was here when it started up 31 years ago,” he said. “For the division, because it’s a milestone in production for a mine that’s been a steady producer, that’s employed a lot of Nevadans and supported a lot of Nevada businesses for many years.”
Dylan Shaver, representing the Nevada Mining Association, said it was important for the organization to be at Coeur Rochester because the site is celebrating two large accomplishments.
“These are all numbers that everybody in the state can be proud of,” he said. “We’re proud of them in the association, but all of Nevada can be proud of this.”
“Thirty-one years is an impressive mine life and 150 million ounces is amazing. I don’t know about you guys, but I bet there’s another 150 million ounces to come out of this place over the next 30 years.” — Mitch Krebs, Coeur Mining Inc. president and CEO