Wildfire in Lytton, B.C., seen on June 30, 2021. (@guyatsfu/Twitter)

Teck shaves coal sales guidances due to wildfire disruptions

The company forecasts a drop of 300-500,ooo tonnes in sales due to broken rail links

  • Jul. 7, 2021 12:00 a.m.

Teck has reported that there are ongoing disruptions to its rail connections between its steel-making coal operations and west coast terminals on the coast that are having flow-on effects to its guidances for the quarter.

According to the company, disruptions to rail links in Lytton – which was 90 percent destroyed by a suspected human-caused wildfire a week ago – had caused it to re-route shipments of coal to Prince Rupert, instead of the Lower Mainland.

Two people have been confirmed killed in the Lytton wildfire, which swept through the town on Wednesday last week, giving residents only minutes to evacuate. Investigations into the cause of the fire are continuing.

Limited rail traffic through Lytton has been restored connecting the Lower Mainland to the rest of BC, but Teck continues to send shipments north.

“Teck is assessing the overall impact to customer shipments and/or production, which will be dependent on the length of the rail disruption. CP and CN are working to assess damage and begin repairs,” the company said in a release.

The disruption will have flow-on effects on the company’s sales guidances.

“At this time, based on guidance provided by the railways with respect to the timeline for repairs, Teck’s third quarter steel-making coal sales are expected to be reduced by 300-500 thousand tonnes,” reads the release.

According to company documents, guidances for the second quarter were for them to sell between 6 million and 6.4 million tonnes. The actual number for the second quarter, and guidances for the third quarter are yet to be released, but the company said the second quarter was unaffected.

“Teck’s second quarter sales are unaffected as the disruption began on the last day of the quarter. Teck is also taking steps to mitigate the effect of rail disruption to transportation of product from Highland Valley Copper operations (HVC), which is not expected to have a material effect on third quarter sales at this time.”

All Teck operations across the province are continuing to operate, with no sites directly disrupted by wildfires or the recent heatwave.

READ MORE: Teck listed as one of Canada’s best corporate citizens

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Cranbrook Townsman