Drilling shows Haile upside as labour shortage bites

OCEANAGOLD reported that drilling at its Haile gold mine in South Carolina, continues to show the opportunity to add resources near its existing deposits.
Drilling shows Haile upside as labour shortage bites Drilling shows Haile upside as labour shortage bites Drilling shows Haile upside as labour shortage bites Drilling shows Haile upside as labour shortage bites Drilling shows Haile upside as labour shortage bites

Haile in South Carolina, USA

Staff reporter

Since an exploration update published in August 2018, Oceana has drilled 67 drill holes for 12,772m from surface, including 55 brownfield holes at Haile and 12 holes at the nearby Locust greenfields target.

Significant drill results include 68.3m grading 3.57 grams per tonne at Snake expansion, 33.4m at 4.33gpt at Ledbetter and 20.1m at 7.23gpt at Red Hill.

An 18-hole diamond drill program was completed outside the US$1300 per ounce reserve pit design and within the resource shell at the Snake West extension. 

Phase two drilling of 11 holes has been completed with assay results pending.

Haile came on stream in October 2017 and produced 131,800oz in 2018, and is forecast to produce 145,000-160,000oz in 2019.

The expansion will take plant throughput from about 2.5 million tonnes a year to 3.5-4.0Mtpa in 2020, raising gold production to 175,000-200,000oz. 

Resource drilling is planned in 2019 at Ledbetter, Snake, Red Hill and Haile in addition to testing other targets.

Oceana is currently permitting to develop larger open pits and the Horseshoe underground mine as part of an expansion project.

An ISA mill will be installed during the first half of the year to add to the new pebble crusher and existing tower mill. 

Once Horseshoe is developed, the company expects to drill deeper targets from underground.

The company is also seeking to recruit miners from the Western US to address a labour shortage as unemployment in South Carolina is at its lowest rate in 30 years, at around 3%.

Shares in OceanaGold closed 3.6% lower yesterday at A$4.52.