Sierra Rutile’s team on track to hit 2013 production targets
Sierra Rutile Ltd’s 2013 second quarter operational update indicates the company is on track to hit its full-year production targets, despite shutting down operations for 21 days in April to overhaul its dredge and floating plant, and finish fine-tuning its new Lanti Dry Mining operation. (Photo: Sierra Rutile, CEO, John Sisay)
The maintenance work included changing the top tumbler on the Lanti dredge – a part weighing 30-tonnes which had only been changed once before. The hard work paid off, and second quarter production figures of 26,898 tonnes of rutile and 9,395 tonnes of ilmenite are up on 2012 figures for the same period last year by 23% and 75% respectively.
The second quarter also saw Sierra Rutile’s new Lanti Dry Mining Operation successfully complete 168 hours of final performance testing. It is now operating in excess of its design rate of 3.5 million tonnes per annum and is forecast to contribute 30,000 – 35,000 tonnes of rutile out of Sierra Rutile’s 2013 expected total rutile production of 125,000 tonnes.
Sierra Rutile is also making strides in other areas and Q2 marked the launch of its innovative Localisation Plan – a career development programme which will identify high potential Sierra Leonean employees and fast track them into the company’s top technical, supervisory and management positions. The company, which already has a 95% Sierra Leonean workforce, is intent on increasing numbers of Sierra Leone nationals in its higher-level positions. Its Localisation Plan ensures that the brightest and the best Sierra Leoneans in the company achieve their full potential; as well as contributing towards the development of the country’s technical and managerial pool.
Commenting on the company’s performance, CEO John Sisay said: “The overhaul of the dredge during the quarter and the successful commissioning of the Lanti Dry Mining operation have been significant milestones for Sierra Rutile. They were challenging tasks to carry out, but necessary to keep the company on track to meet production targets in 2013. As always, Sierra Rutile’s exceptional team of people pulled together to ensure that they were completed efficiently and effectively.”
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