Mining News Pro - Latin America-focused Leagold on Wednesday announced a two-month shutdown of its RDM mine, in Brazil, citing continued regional drought conditions.

According to Mining News Pro -In 2017, the RDM mine was closed on August 11 and restarted, on an intermittent basis, in early November with the onset of the region`s rainy season.

This year, RDM remained operational until early October as the processing plant benefitted from the water dam and pipeline that became operational in the second quarter of 2017, but CEO Neil Woodyer said that insufficient water volumes were available to continue processing operations.

The mine will be restarted in early December, which aligns with the commissioning of the grid powerline in December.

Woodyer said that the shutdown would provide time for water to accumulate in the reservoir to support continuous operations.

“During the shutdown period, the RDM team will be evaluating opportunities to reduce overall water consumption and the minor plant modifications needed to ramp up the processing rate from 7 000 t a day to 9 000 t a day, which becomes possible with the increased power supply from the grid connection."

Meanwhile, Leagold announced the appointment of metallurgical engineer Adriaan Roux as COO for an initial term of six months. The former Endeavour COO and AngloGold Ashanti metallurgist has been providing consulting services to Leagold and has in-depth technical knowledge of the company’s mines.

The COO role is a new position.

Vancouver-based Leagold owns four operating gold mines in Mexico and Brazil, along with a near-term gold mine restart project in Brazil and additional expansion and growth opportunities.