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Gahcho Kué and Diavik take 2019 mine rescue trophies

An image supplied by WSCC shows Diavik's mine rescue team in action on June 1, 2019
An image supplied by WSCC shows Diavik's mine rescue team in action on June 1, 2019.

The Gahcho Kué and Diavik diamond mines were big winners at last weekend’s battle of mine rescue teams outside Yellowknife’s Fieldhouse.

De Beers-owned Gahcho Kué won the overall surface trophy, while Rio Tinto’s Diavik won the overall underground award.

Allan Rodel, general manager, paid tribute to the mine’s third straight win – adding it was “even more impressive considering almost half the team
were competing in their first-ever event.”

Rodel said: “The commitment of the Gahcho Kué team to ongoing training and the professional execution of their duties is a great comfort to their colleagues and their colleagues’ families, who put trust in this team every day at work to keep them safe.”



This was the 62nd edition of the mine rescue tournament, meaning Tom Hanks hadn’t even been born when it started. (Yes, Tom Hanks is 62. Way to make everyone feel old, Tom.)

“It’s amazing to see the focus these teams bring to the competition, and the camaraderie they have with one another,” said Kim Collins Riffel, WSCC’s interim president and chief executive, in a news release.

“The hard work and sacrifices these individuals make to participate in these events is incredible. This isn’t just a competition, but a way to practice life-saving skills.”

Winners go on to the National Western Region Mine Rescue Competition, held this year in Fernie, BC, from September 5-7.



Six teams entered the weekend’s events, with winners announced at a banquet later that evening.

Diavik picked up seven awards in total other than the overall prize – six for underground tests.

Gahcho Kué won four separate surface competitions to lift the overall title.

Nunavut entrants Baffinland won two titles and Meadowbank one award.