COVID-19 Response at Red Dog Operations

Teck and NANA were notified yesterday of a positive COVID-19 test for a contractor. Red Dog is following established response protocols to ensure the health and safety of all personnel at Red Dog Operations is maintained. Information regarding travel and testing:

  • The employee submitted to one COVID-19 test on August 19, three days before travel to site, and then a second test on August 22, the day of travel to Red Dog.
  • Upon arrival at Red Dog, the employee was placed on the Worker Protection Program, which requires employees to abide by various safety measures until results could be confirmed. Both COVID-19 test results taken before arriving on site were confirmed negative.
  • On August 27, the employee began experiencing fatigue and a slight cough.
  • On August 28, the employee was evaluated at the on-site medical clinic where a COVID-19 test was administered and sent off-site for analysis.
  • The employee returned to their worksite under the Worker Protection Plan. During this time, the employee was working in a closed office space in an administrative function in the office adjacent to the project office.
  • On September 2, a positive test result was received from the Alaska Native Medical Center as a result of the test administered on August 28.
  • The employee is now in isolation.

Red Dog Operations is working on-site and with public health authorities to identify and contact any persons who may have had close contact with the individual and is taking precautionary steps to manage the risk of transmission. Additionally:

  • The employee continues to experience fatigue and cold symptoms associated with COVID-19.
  • The employee will undergo a second COVID-19 test in four days and will remain in isolation until they are released by State Public Health authorities.
  • Contact tracing is progressing, and individuals having close contact with the individual will be placed in isolation, assigned to the Worker Protection Protocol, or other appropriate measures will be taken.

Workers who are not contacted by Red Dog Operations do not need to self-quarantine; however, all workers are asked to closely self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, cough, shortness of breath, loss of taste and smell, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat). If employees experience any of these symptoms, please immediately inform your supervisor and the on-site physician assistant (PA) and take immediate steps to self-isolate.

We remain focused on safeguarding the health and safety of our employees and the communities in which they live. Red Dog has put in place comprehensive prevention measures aligned with guidance from public health authorities, including:

  • Implementation of mandatory facial coverings in areas and situations where social distancing is not practicable.
  • Implementation of COVID-19 testing for all inbound personnel and additional testing of outbound regional personnel.
  • All personnel with the capability to work remotely are working from home, based on the needs of each respective team.
  • Enhanced cleaning and disinfecting protocols, including frequent disinfecting of employee buses and work areas.
  • Increasing social distancing practices at site, including reducing the number of passengers on buses and planes; separating groups of employees at work; canceling large group meetings; changing meetings from in-person to virtual, and modifying eating areas to allow for appropriate separation.
  • Reducing or eliminating in-person meetings and other large gatherings.
  • Screening all employees and contractors prior to travel to site for risk factors and symptoms.
  • Promoting personal preventative measures, such as frequent handwashing.
  • Requiring employees who show symptoms or who have been in close contact with someone with symptoms, to stay home from work and/or stay in their personnel accommodations room and contact the on-site PA for an evaluation.

We will continue to closely monitor this situation and provide further updates to employees, contractors, and community leadership as necessary.

Les Yesnik
General Manager, Red Dog Operations