Montreal

Rio Tinto Alcan temporarily lays off 60 in Quebec

As many as 60 Rio Tinto Alcan employees in Alma, Que. have been forced into early vacations or temporary layoffs as the metal giant tries to fix a problem with the formulation of produced aluminum.
Rio Tinto Alcan says all of the resources at this plant in Alma, Que. are being used to try to fix a problem with the formulation of produced aluminum. ((Radio-Canada))

As many as 60 Rio Tinto Alcan employees in Alma, Que. have been forced into early vacations or temporary layoffs as the metal giant tries to fix a problem with the formulation of produced aluminum.

The aluminum produced at the smelter in the Saguenay Lac St. Jean region contains higher levels of iron and silicon than normal.

Equipment that's normally used to re-line aluminum pots has been diverted to fixing the problem, forcing the shutdown of the re-lining department for more than two weeks.

Company spokesman Bryan Tucker says all of the resources at the plant, including the pot re-lining equipment, are being used to try to fix the problem.

The quantity of aluminum production hasn't been affected.

However, the molten from Alma is being mixed with product from nearby smelters to produce metal that meets customer specifications.