De Beers Group responded to an unusual request for assistance at a remote
mine site in OntarioFriday morning.
The emergency response team at Victor mine received the request from
Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Trenton Rescue Coordination Centre regarding two hot
air balloonists who were reported to have blown off course and were forced to
make an emergency landing in the muskeg in the north of the Canadian province, 100kms
west of the mine.
The balloonists, an
American resident and Polish resident, were competing in the 23rd Annual
America’s Challenge Gas Balloon race headquartered in Albuquerque, New Mexico
and were racing to Duluth, Minnesota.
A helicopter stationed at
the Victor Mine site was dispatched and recovered the two balloonists
uninjured. The pair were flown back by helicopter to the mine site, where they
were given a meal and the chance to shower before joining a contractor charter
flight from the mine to Timmins Ontario.
“We are extremely
proud of our Victor Mine team for their quick and professional action to what
could have been a very serious situation,” said Al Collins, Superintendent
Asset Services at Victor Mine who coordinated the support from the mine.
“Weather in the remote northern region can be quite harsh this time of the
year, but fortunately everything went well and we have a happy ending.”