George Church from WorkSafeBC spoke to the crowd about the importance of workplace safety and remembering those who have been injured or killed on the job.

Day of Mourning ceremony recognizes workers

On April 28, about 35 people gathered at the District of Fort St. James office in Fort to remember workers.

On April 28, about 35 people gathered at the District of Fort St. James office in Fort to remember.

There were representatives from WorkSafeBC, Tl’oh Forest Products, Apollo Forest Products, KDL, Ministry of Forests, RCMP, Conifex, District of Fort St. James and Public Works.

Councillor Dave Birdi and George Church, senior regional officer for the Prince George office of WorkSafeBC, both spoke to those gathered and a wreath was lain.

“I think in light of all the recent mill accidents it clearly illustrates why the Day of Mourning is very relevant in our region,” said Church.

The group was remembering those who have been killed, injured or suffered illness as a result of work-related incidents.

One week after the tragic mill explosion and fire which killed two and injured many more at Lakeland Mills in Prince George, the ceremony had all the more meaning.

First recognized in 1984, the day gained national significance in 1991 with the Workers Mourning Day Act.

Canada began the tradition, but the day is now observed in many countries around the world.

WorkSafeBC recorded 142 workplace fatalities in 2011, 71 of which were the result of occupational disease, mainly due to exposure to asbestos, according to WorkSafe.

Ten of the total deaths were attributed to the forestry industry, four to oil, gas and mining. The industries with the most work-related deaths were the general construction and transportation industries.

By region, two deaths occurred in the Fraser-Fort George area and one in the Bulkley-Nechako. By far the greatest number of deaths took place in the greater Vancouver area.

So far this year, with the Burns Lake Babine Forest Products explosion and fire and the more recent Lakeland Mill explosion and fire, the area is keenly aware of potential hazards from working in industrial work environments.

Just as the paper was going to press last week, news of another workplace fatality came out of the Plateau Mill outside Vanderhoof. A maintenance employee for contractor BID Construction was killed early Thursday morning. The BC Coroners Service and WorkSafeBC were on site investigating the incident.

Just Posted

Fort St. James businesses get into the Christmas spirit with decorating contest

Northland Automotive Ltd. won first place in Fort St. James Chamber of… Continue reading

Couple selling fake jewelry in Fraser Lake, say RCMP

A man and woman have been defrauding local residents, offering fake jewelry for sale

Gitxsan forming cross-sector salmon management team

Nation again declares closure of fishery in territory for 2019

Editorial: The Speaker shouldn’t be an MLA

Time to re-evaluate the Speaker position

Man caught on camera allegedly trying to defraud ICBC

Auto-insurer warns B.C. drivers to record info after crashes

‘People talk about deep sadness:’ Scientists study climate change grief

Some call it environmental grief, some call it solastalgia — a word coined for a feeling of homesickness when home changes around you.

As protectors abandon Trump, investigation draws closer

Cohen was sentenced Wednesday to three years in prison for an array of crimes.

Senate delays start of sittings in new home, delaying start of broadcasts

The Senate and House of Commons are moving into temporary homes for the next decade as a result of long-planned and badly needed renovations to the Centre Block.

UK leader seeks EU lifeline after surviving confidence vote

EU leaders gather for a two-day summit, beginning Thursday, which will center on the Brexit negotiations.

French police try to catch attack suspect dead or alive

Local authorities increase death toll to three, including 13 wounded and five in serious condition

BCHL’ers blanked by Russia at World Junior A Challenge

Canada West loses battle of the unbeaten teams in the preliminary round

Second Canadian missing in China after questioning by authorities

Michael Spavor, founder of a non-profit that organizes cultural-exchange trips to North Korea, “is presently missing in China”

Cannabis gift ideas for this holiday season

Put the green in happy holidays, now that cannabis is legal in Canada

Most Read