- The school confesses it failed to perform regular inspections and will pay almost $100K in penalties and bursaries.
- Skyler Blackie died 11 days after being critically wounded in a training incident at a firefighting school in Waverley, N.S., in 2019.
The Nova Scotia Firefighters School has been condemned to spend $102,000 in penalties and bursaries after claiming guilty in the demise of Truro firefighter Skyler Blackie.
Blackie died in hospital after a fire extinguisher he was holding burst during a training practice at the school in Waverley in March 2019.
The school confessed it failed to conduct routine checks on its fire extinguishers as needed by law and did not maintain adequate records.
Investigators saw the faulty extinguisher, which was donated to the school by the defunct Imperial Oil refinery in Dartmouth, was visibly rusty and would have been discarded if annual reviews had taken place.
The school failed to perform annual visual inspections, and pressure tests assumed to occur every 12 years.
Both inspections were years due on the extinguisher that burst in Blackie’s hands as he trained to put out a propane fire during a skills test.
The top of the extinguisher broke away and struck him in the face. He died after 11 days in the hospital.
The court heard depressed victim effect statements from Blackie’s mom, dad, widow, brother, and sister.
They described their daily struggle to survive with the loss of a loved one who they say was extremely devoted to his work.
Skyler’s brother, Errison Blackie, is a firefighter with the Truro Fire Service. Dressed in his uniform, he described the blame he feels for living his brother’s vision of a firefighting career.
His father, Blaine Blackie, says he can’t excuse the school, an institution committed to protecting firefighters, for ignoring safety practices that led to his son’s demise.
Source – cbc.ca