This week, heavy rain in northern Chile forced some of the largest copper mines to temporarily idle production. In an area that never usually sees rain, the Atacama Desert, roads were washed out and some villages experienced flooding.
Codelco idled all of its mines in the region including Chuquicamata and Radomiro Tomic. The mills continued to process stockpiled ore, but the large fleets of trucks were parked for safety concerns. The Chilean government issued a state of emergency in the region and put the military in charge of security. At one point, nearly 50,000 people were without water and power, after the storms passed.