JAKARTA, Jan 18 (Reuters) - The Indonesian unit of Newmont Mining Corp. said on Monday it has temporarily halted mine operations after a deadly accident but was continuing to process ore from stockpiles at the Batu Hijau mine.
PT Newmont Nusa Tenggara said in a statement a rock-slide occurred in the Batu Hijau copper and gold mine in Sumbawa island, eastern Indonesia, on Sunday and buried a dozer operator who was working at the site.
"In addition, all mine operations in the pit have stopped pending investigations by the Department of Energy and Mineral Resources and PT NNT," the firm said.
The firm did not elaborate impact on production and when it will resume mine operations.
"We are cooperating fully with government authorities to investigate the causes of this accident and learn how to prevent this from happening in the future," said Darren Hall, a general manager at PT Newmont Nusa Tenggara.
In September 2009, PT NNT had also temporarily suspended operations because of a rock-slide at one of the pit's walls, but no fatality was reported at that time.
Mine output from PT NNT was already forecast to fall by 1.5 percent to 2 percent annually for the next five years after problems at the mine, according to the energy and mines ministry.
Before the accident in September, PT Newmont Nusa Tenggara had expected the mine to produce 500 million pounds of copper concentrate and 525,000 ounces of gold this year.