Premier John Horgan and Minister of Labour Harry Bains have issued the following statement on the workplace fatalities in Fernie:
“Late yesterday afternoon, British Columbians were saddened to learn of three workplace fatalities in the community of Fernie. The circumstances surrounding the accident at the Fernie Memorial Arena are still under investigation and the community has declared a local state of emergency while HAZMAT teams address a suspected ammonia leak. WorkSafeBC, the BC Coroners Service and the Ministry of Environment are on scene.
“This is a tragic situation. Families and friends are grieving, and our hearts are with them. We send them our deepest condolences.
“We want to thank those who responded so quickly and valiantly, such as the Fernie Fire Department, Elk Valley RCMP and the BC Ambulance Service.
“Like every British Columbian, our thoughts are with the loved ones and the families of those involved and the entire close-knit community of Fernie.
“Neither workers nor their families should have to fear for their safety when they are on the job. Tragedies like this force us to underscore our commitment to ensure that B.C. families can rely on safe workplaces.”