Red Dog Mine is one of the world’s largest zinc mines. Teck operates the mine located about 80 miles north of Kotzebue in the NANA region. Inaccessible except by air for most of the year, the remote location of the mine creates logistical challenges — and safety is critical.
Red Dog is comprised of two permanent camps and two seasonal camps. Maximum occupancy can reach up to 650 beds. NMS provides food service, housekeeping, janitorial, billeting, and commissary management for the camps.
This year, we achieved a historic safety milestone. As of May 16, 2023, all Red Dog personnel and contractors have worked one year and over 2,300,000 hours with no lost time injuries. This is the first time in the site’s history this was achieved since operations began in 1989.
At NMS, one of our core values is that safety guides our behavior. Safety is practiced at the corporate office, in the field, and in all our operations. Over the last ten years, we have seen steady progress in lowering the frequency of injuries, and this shared achievement is evidence our safety culture is growing stronger.
One of our key training and safety systems at NMS is SafeTrax. SafeTrax manages employee training through a dual system that allows managers to develop content and track completed competencies while individual employees complete required training modules. SafeTrax includes safety training, emergency response tracking and health, hygiene, and sanitation training. We track individual performance through modules that support continuous improvement by matching quality issues with training needs.
SafeTrax also houses our internal program, “Good Catch Near Miss.” This rewards program enables employees to report events that could likely result in injury or property damage but did not because of luck or other intervening factors. These events allow us to correct dangerous behaviors or conditions before they result in future injury or property damage. This program is an awareness tool that enables employees to forward safety-related acts, situations, or other observations to management.
Measuring success through safety is a key component to our company values. When we achieve a milestone, we like to celebrate and recognize it. Working with Teck leadership we hosted safety celebration dinners to recognize the 2,300,000 hours with no lost time injuries at Red Dog. The Teck Alaska Senior team had a great time serving our staff and were appreciative of the opportunity to see what NMS does daily.
This record milestone adds to the Red Dog team’s achievements, including a National Safety Council Industry Leader Award and an NSC Occupational Excellence Achievement Award.