Avino Silver & Gold Mines Ltd. ("Avino" or "the Company") is pleased to announce the re-opening of the Avino Mine and the re-starting of mining operations. The Avino Mine is located 80km northeast of Durango, Mexico.
Since dewatering the mine, Avino has hauled out a total of 5,850 tonnes of material from the underground mine workings. This initial tonnage was blasted mill feed material left underground prior to the mine shutting down 13 years ago. Samples of this material have been assayed at the mine site laboratory and the analytical results indicate they are higher in grade than the historic stockpile material currently being processed in circuit #2. Avino intends to start processing this higher grade underground material in September 2014 using circuit #2. Concentrate produced from this underground feed material will be used for the solicitation of proposals from various trading firms who have expressed interest in buying the concentrate product.
Underground mining operations have also re-commenced at the Avino mine. Full scale mining is now underway at level 11.5 with drifts heading east and west along the vein; the new 1mW Caterpillar diesel generator, jumbo, scoop and air compressor are currently being used in the mining operation. Mining will also proceed on level 12, and the ramp will be extended from level 12.5 to level 17. Stockpiling of development material from mining operations is also underway with plans to feed circuit #2 on a full time basis starting in September 2014.
Circuit# 3 is on schedule for commissioning in the fourth quarter of 2014. As of the date of this news release, the following activities had been completed or were in progress in preparation for the commissioning:
- Installation of ball mill rubber liners had been completed by personnel from Poligoma using their own equipment and tools with support from Avino's maintenance crew.
- At the crushing plant, the old product screen was dismantled and a new screen together with feed and discharge chutes were installed; additional structural steel and platforms were included to complete the installation. This work was carried out by FIMSA with assistance from Avino.
- Crushing operations are expected to resume at the end of August 2014.
- Electrical installation of the start/stop switches and wiring for the control system for the thickener was in progress.
- Construction of a roof over the thickener and filter area had been started.
Photographs of the recent activity at the Avino Mine can be viewed by clicking here.
"The re-opening of underground mining operations represents a major milestone achieved as we deliver on our promise of growth. The local communities' support has been tremendous as they are thrilled we are creating new jobs for the region. Our dedicated operating team should be congratulated on their efforts to achieve targets under strict scheduling and financial restrictions. We continue to work towards completing our goal of increasing mill capacity from 500 TPD to 1,500 TPD in the fourth quarter of 2014."
- David Wolfin, President, CEO & Director, Avino Silver & Gold Mines Ltd.
Avino is a silver and gold producer operating the Avino property located in Durango, Mexico. The Company's mission is to become a mid-tier silver producer through profitable organic growth at the Avino property and the strategic acquisition of mineral exploration and mining properties. We are committed to managing all business activities in an environmentally responsible and cost-effective manner while contributing to the well-being of the communities in which we operate.
ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD
David Wolfin, Chief Executive Officer,
Avino Silver & Gold Mines Ltd.