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Hecla lost around $135 million by not operating Lucky Friday for a year

This week's major news in North Idaho was the announced reopening of the Lucky Friday mine, in Mullan.

For most folks, the Lucky Friday is called a silver mine. In fact, it also produces good amounts of lead and zinc.

Hecla Mining had to shut down mining of those metals for more than a year, following investigations by the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration.

Based on the year's typical production of silver — described as roughly 3 million ounces — Hecla missed out on about $90 million in revenue for that metal. But that's just for silver.

When the loss includes no revenue for zinc and lead, the total loss for the company comes to about $135 million over the full 13 months of non-production, said company VP of Investor Relations Jim Sabala.

Photo by SR photographer Dan Pelle:  Hecla CEO Phillips Baker Jr. discusses the reopening of the Lucky Friday mine.