Kiewit and Two Ex-Managers Face Canada Jobsite Fatality Criminal Trial
Sept. 22, 2020, Engineering News Record, by Scott Van Voorhis
BRITISH COLUMBIA – Canada appears set to try a rare criminal case against a major company – U.S. contractor Kiewit Corp. – for a workplace fatality stemming from a more than decade-old accident on a remote British Columbia hydroelectric project that killed a 24-year-old field employee.
Former construction manager charged in B.C. worker’s death arrested in Montana
Sept. 12, 2020, CBC News, by Bethany Lindsay
BRITISH COLUMBIA – A former manager for construction giant Peter Kiewit Sons has been arrested in the U.S. and is facing extradition to Canada to face trial for criminal negligence causing the death of a worker.
Gerald Karjala is one of two men charged alongside Kiewit in connection with the 2009 death of Sam Fitzpatrick on a hydroelectric worksite on the central B.C. coast.
Waiting for Kiewit criminal negligence trial on 11th anniversary of B.C. worker’s death
Feb. 22, 2020, CBC News, by Bethany Lindsay
As noted in this article, the United Steelworkers supported the Fitzpatrick family for many years.
Sam’s father, Brian, spoke to a USW Health, Safety and Environment Conference in 2014 and is featured in a video talking about his son and the union’s Stop the Killing campaign. You can watch the video here.
USW Local 1-1937 Fatality
May 1, 2019, CTV News
Statement from USW District 3 Director Stephen Hunt on the fatality of a USW Local 1-1937 member:
It is with great sadness that a fatal logging accident on April 28, 2019 took the life of Brother Dylan Montjoy, age 46, while working near Nahwitti River on Northern Vancouver Island.
New review of worker safety underway seven years after B.C. mill explosions
April 30, 2019, The Canadian Press, by Amy Smart
VANCOUVER – The union representing four workers who died in two British Columbia sawmill explosions in 2012 says it hopes a new review of worker safety ordered by the provincial government will lead to overdue justice for survivors and families of the victims.
18 months for contractor after death of worker in Lachine collapse
Sept. 18, 2018, Montreal Gazette, by Paul Cherry
A sentence of 18 months has been handed down to a contractor who was found guilty of manslaughter earlier this year for the death of an employee buried by a collapse during work on a sewer line.
Westray Law Results in Guilty Judgement for Stave Lake Quarries (SLQ)
Oct. 27, 2017, R. v. Stave Lake Quarries Inc.
The United Steelworkers knows only too well that fighting for justice for workers is a never-ending task and results sometimes are not necessarily measured by quick judgments or satisfaction with the courts.
In the case of 22-year-old Kelsey Kristian and her family, justice took more than nine years. The company that was responsible for her death in 2007 eventually pled guilty of offences under the amendments to the Criminal Code known collectively as the Westray Law.
Inquest looking into the death of Paul Rochette starts in Sudbury
Jan. 22, 2018, CBC News
An inquest is underway in Sudbury looking into the death of Paul Rochette, who was killed on the job in 2014.
Explosions and accidents have workers at B.C. mine demanding action
Jan. 22, 2018, CBC News, by Bob Keating
The union that represents miners at Teck’s Elkview Mine says it warned the company and province about a series of accidents and explosions.
Now the United Steelworkers Union is demanding action before there is a fatality after several incidents recently at Teck’s steel-making coal mines in the Elk Valley, near the Alberta border.
Penalties when workers die on the job don’t go far enough, say labour groups, families
Nov. 30, 2017, CBC News, by Jacques Marcoux, Kristin Annable
Only 5 jail sentences have been served in connection with a workplace fatality, CBC found.
Ministerial Statement Regarding Westray Law In The Legislative Assembly of Alberta
May 1, 2017, Hansard, Legislative Assemby of Alberta
Christina Gray (MLA, Edmonton-Mill Woods) brought up the recently signed Westray Memorandum of Understanding: Mr. Speaker, this year’s Day of Mourning also marks the 25th anniversary of the Westray mine disaster in Nova Scotia. On May 9, 1992, a large explosion in the Westray mine, in Plymouth, killed 26 underground miners, that day’s entire shift of workers who were underground. A subsequent public inquiry blamed mine management and government regulators for what was deemed a preventable disaster. In response to the Westray mine disaster the federal government amended the Criminal Code to allow criminal charges in serious cases of workplace fatalities or injuries. That law applies to anyone on a work site who directs the work of others.
Workplace Manslaughter Charge Going To Trial Says Quebec Superior Court
April 12, 2017, The White Collar Post, by Norm Keith
The Quebec Superior Court recently released a decision with broad implications for corporate employers, owners, managers and supervisors across Canada. In R. c. Fournier, Justice Villemure held that an individual’s contravention of provincial health and safety legislation was an “unlawful act”, under section s. 222(5)(a) of the Criminal Code (“Code”) and therefore a basis for committal to trial under a criminal charge of manslaughter. This case involved the owner of a small construction company, who is now personally being charged with manslaughter arising from a workplace fatality. This is the first decision of its kind in Canada.
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