Compass Minerals Welcomes U.S. Assistant Secretary of Labor for Mine Safety and Health to Cote Blanche Mine

On May 4, Compass Minerals welcomed a team of Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) officials and United Steel Workers representatives for a tour of the Cote Blanche mine.

In the area for the Regional MSHA-officiated Mine Rescue Competition in New Iberia, Louisiana, Joe Main, assistant secretary of labor, and his team requested a visit to the mine. For many on the team, including Mr. Main, Cote Blanche was the first salt mine they had toured.

“I’ve been in the industry for more than 40 years, and this is the first salt mine I have visited,” said Mr. Main. “It was a great opportunity to observe the operations and see the innovative approaches the company and employees are taking to make mines safe.”

While underground, the visitors stopped to meet with some of the Compass Minerals miners, including the longest tenured employee at Cote Blanche, Henry Lewis, who has worked at the mine for 50 years. Mr. Main shared words of gratitude for the work done by the miners, reminding them of the importance of working safely and going home in the same condition, or even better, than they arrived.

“It was an honor to welcome Mr. Main and his team, as well as the USW representatives, to the mine,” said Don Brumm, vice president of operations at the Cote Blanche mine. “We have made such great strides in our approach to safety and our team was proud to share those achievements with our partners.”

Two Cote Blanche teams competed in the Southern Regional Mine Rescue Competition, which is the oldest and longest-running such competition in the U.S. metal/non-metal industry. The veteran Cote Blanche team placed 7th overall, and earned 3rd place in first aid and 2nd place in the smoke chamber competition.

To right: Assistant Secretary of Labor, Joe Main, meets with Compass Minerals miners.