Russia’s mining giant Nornickel’s Arctic Siberian processing plant collapsed during maintenance in the early morning hours of Feb 20. In the accident, the building of the ore reloading facility and the adjoining walkway crashed at the Norilsk Concentrator leading to the death of three people, according to the company’s statements. Five people have been rescued from the site.
The maintenance work was being conducted to repair and strengthen the structures. The plant is operating at limited capacity amid restrictions related to emergency rescue works.
Nornickel’s CEO, Vladimir Potanin has taken full responsibility for the tragic accident and attributed it to severe violations of the safety rules. A full review is being carried out by the company’s emergency response team.
Earlier, on Feb 5, an arbitration court pronounced damages of RUB146.2bn ($1,979mn, as of Dec 3, 2020) for a diesel spill incident due to leakage of the plant’s fuel tanks in May 2020.
Norilsk Nickel is a diversified mining and metallurgical company and the world’s largest producer of palladium, high-grade nickel. It is a major producer of platinum and copper. It also produces cobalt, rhodium, silver, gold, iridium, ruthenium, selenium, tellurium, sulphur and other products.