Detour Gold Corp. announced that construction on its Detour Lake open pit gold mine in northeastern Ontario has passed the 75% completion mark and that the project remains on schedule for gold production to start in the first quarter of 2013.

                                Company president and CEO Gerald Panneton commented, “We have achieved another significant milestone with the successful connection of the 230 kV transmission line, which will allow for the full commissioning of the grinding mills to start as planned before year-end.”

                                According to the company, pre-production capital cost estimates for Detour Lake remain unchanged at $1.45 billion, of which approximately $969 million had been spent as of June 30, 2012, leaving $481 million. Approximately $1.29 billion has been committed.

                                The 2012 pre-stripping operation is under way in the Calcite Zone (western portion) of the Detour Lake deposit, and the company said it started its mining activities in this mineralized zone because it would be easier to provide ore production from there in the ramp-up year of the mine to sustain throughput. The pre-stripping operation is supported by eight haul trucks, two hydraulic shovels and two additional excavators. Production rates had been steadily increasing and had reached a peak of nearly 120,000 mt/d. The company plans to have up to 3 million mt of ore (at an average grade of 0.85 g/t Au) available for processing prior to the commencement of operations.

                                In preparation for the 2013 production plan, Detour Gold will have by year-end 2012 a mining fleet at site of 26 haulage trucks (20 x 320-mt capacity and 6 x 100-mt) with four shovels plus two smaller excavators to load the 100-mt trucks.