Charges against OCI withdrawn

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Charges against Ocean Choice International Inc. (OCI), in connection with the death of a crewmember on a fishing vessel in 2012, were withdrawn in provincial court this morning.

OCI was initially charged with eight violations of the Occupational Health and Safety Act in connection with the death of the 27-year-old in February 2012.

The incident occurred as the Katsheshuk II was en route from the Funk Island Bank to Bay Roberts.The man, from St. Anthony, was killed after being struck by a steel door while exiting a shrimp holding tank on the factory deck of the vessel. He had just inspected the tank that had previously been cleaned by another worker.

In court this morning, Crown attorney Shawn Patten told Judge Colin Flynn the Crown agreed to withdraw charges again OCI. However, a case against Katsheshuk Fisheries Ltd. will proceed in court, with the next date set for March 11.

That company was also charged with eight violations of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, including failure to provide a safe workplace and to provide training and supervision, failure to ensure that powered equipment has controls positioned to prevent inadvertent activation, to ensure machinery is locked out prior to maintenance being conducted, and to ensure that a worker does not enter a confined space until the worker is qualified to do so, safety precautions are documented, and an attendant is in place.

St. John’s lawyer Twila Reid is representing both companies.

Organizations: Funk Island Bank, Katsheshuk Fisheries

Geographic location: St. Anthony

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