Codelco restarts operations at Andina mine after suspension due to earthquake

17 September 2015 (Last Updated September 17th, 2015 18:30)

Chilean state-owned copper mining company Codelco has restarted operations at its open-pit Andina mine 80km north-east of Santiago, following a suspension caused by an earthquake.

Chilean state-owned copper mining company Codelco has restarted operations at its open-pit Andina mine 80km north-east of Santiago, following a suspension caused by an earthquake.

An earthquake with a magnitude 8.3 struck off the coast on Wednesday, forcing the company to suspend operations at the mine, which produced 232,000t of copper in 2014.

The mine is located at 3,000m above sea level in the 5th region and is a combined open-pit and underground mining operation.

"An earthquake with a magnitude 8.3 struck off the coast on Wednesday, forcing the company to suspend operations at the mine."

As a precautionary measure, Codelco also evacuated workers at its Las Ventanas refining and smelting division and the two Mejillones and Barquito ports.

According to the company, its Chuquicamata, Ministro Hales, Gaby and El Salvador mines were not affected by the earthquake.

Chile's Luksic group unit Antofagasta Minerals also halted operations at its Los Pelambres mine in the Coquimbo region due to the earthquake.

The company said it was inspecting operations at its Los Pelambres copper mine and the quake did not cause any damage to its port infrastructure in the coastal city of Los Vilos.

Located in the central-northern of Chile in Coquimbo Region, the Los Pelambres mine has estimated reserves of 4.9 billion tonnes of ore grading 0.65% copper.

The earthquake that took place west of Illapel, 177 miles north of Santiago is understood to have killed at least eight people, the New York Times reported.