GOLDEN, Colo., Oct. 15, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Atna Resources Ltd. ("Atna" or the "Company") (TSX:ATN/OTCBB:ATNAF) is pleased to update the status of development at its underground Pinson Mine near Winnemucca, Nevada. Significant progress was made during the third quarter of 2012, including:
- The second access into the mine was completed in June, and the spiral decline has been driven an additional 370 feet, providing access to two ore mining areas. A total of 440 feet of ore stope access has been completed.
- Year to date ore production from development now totals approximately 3,390 tons at an average grade of 0.41 oz/ton. Ground conditions in the ore mining areas have been good.
- Boart-Longyear started underground RC drilling for stope delineation in early October and eighteen drillholes have been completed for a total of 1,420 feet. Assay results on this drilling are pending.
- A temporary Cemented Rock Fill (CRF) plant is being built for use in backfilling ore mining areas and a permanent CRF plant has been designed. A mobile crushing plant is being set up on site to crush CRF aggregate.
- Power lines have been extended to provide power to additional de-watering wells and the crusher location. A second dewatering well was commissioned in September and quotes are being received to add a third well.
- An assay lab is under construction and is expected to be completed in early December. Assay services are presently being provided by a third party lab. Expansion of the lined ore stockpile area is also underway to contain mined sulfide ore.
- The Nevada Division of Environmental Protection, Application for Major Modification to the Water Pollution Control Permit, has been declared administratively complete and is currently under technical review with approval expected by the end of the year.
- In July, approximately 1,550 tons of oxide ore was shipped to Newmont Twin Creeks oxide mill for processing. The ore contained 548 ounces of gold at and average grade of 0.353 oz/ton. Recovery by the mill was 92.6% of contained gold. Atna received approximately $600,000 for this ore sale which will be credited against capital in the third quarter.
- All department head positions at Pinson have been filled. Atna now has 13 full-time employees on site. DMC Mining Services, the contract mining company, has 32 full-time employees on site, and they have mobilized the major equipment needed for underground mining.
"Mine development at Pinson remains on track for gold production in 2013. The goal is to ramp-up production through 2013 to a target level production rate of 90,000 to 100,000 ounces gold per year by early 2014. Substantial progress is being made in all areas. The management team at Pinson is to be congratulated on their strong performance in moving this project forward," states Jim Hesketh, President and CEO.
As outlined in the Pinson Technical Report, the Company expects the Pinson Underground mine to have a six-year mine life. These projections are based on existing proven and probable reserves and do not include conversion of any of the additional gold resource to reserve. Approximately 550,000 ounces of gold will be produced at an average rate of approximately 90,000 ounces per year. Between ten and fourteen working faces will need to be developed in the mine to achieve these production goals. Ramp-up of production will occur over the next two years. Additions of manpower and equipment will continue to be added as working faces are established.
For additional information on Atna Resources and the Pinson Gold Mine, please visit our website at www.atna.com or our filings with Canadian securities regulators on SEDAR or U.S. regulators on EDGAR.
This press release contains certain "forward-looking statements," as defined in the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, and within the meaning of Canadian securities legislation relating to the Pinson Mine. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts. They are based on the beliefs, estimates and opinions of the Company's management on the date the statements are made and they involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Consequently, there can be no assurances that such statements will prove to be accurate and actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. The Company undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements if management's beliefs, estimates or opinions, or other factors, should change, unless required by law. Factors that could cause future results to differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements include: gold deposit modeling, development and future operating costs at the Pinson Mine; the Company might encounter problems such as the significant depreciation of metals prices; accidents and other risks associated with mining exploration and development operations; the risk that the Company will encounter unanticipated geological factors; the Company's need for and ability to obtain additional financing; the possibility that the Company may not be able to secure permitting and other governmental clearances necessary to carry out the Company's exploration and development programs; and the other risk factors discussed in greater detail in the Company's various filings on SEDAR (www.sedar.com) with Canadian securities regulators and its filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Company's 2011 Form 20-F dated March 26, 2012.
Cautionary Note to U.S. Investors --- The United States Securities and Exchange Commission permits U.S. mining companies, in their filings with the SEC, to disclose only those mineral deposits that a company can economically and legally extract or produce. We use certain terms in this report, such as "measured," "indicated," "inferred," and "resources," that the SEC guidelines strictly prohibit U.S. registered companies from including in their filings with the SEC.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, CONTACT:
James Hesketh, President and CEO - (303) 278-8464
Valerie Kimball, Investor Relations - toll free (877) 692-8182
SOURCE Atna Resources Ltd.