Man faces criminal, regulatory charges in auto body shop death, Dartmouth, N.S.

A 41 year-old Milford man is facing criminal and regulatory charges following a two-year investigation into the death of Peter Kempton.

In September 2013, Peter Kempton was killed when the vehicle he was working on caught fire at Your Mechanic Auto in Dartmouth.

The Department of Labour and Advanced Education and the Integrated Criminal Investigation Division launched investigations into the incident.

Elie Phillip Hoyeck is charged with one count of Criminal Negligence Causing Death under Bill C-45. Hoyeck was the business owner of Your Mechanic Auto Corner, a Westphal body shop, where Peter Kempton worked. During the course of the investigation, police collaborated with investigators from Labour and Advanced Education and the Nova Scotia Public Prosecution Service.

In addition, Hoyeck will face twelve charges under the Occupational Health and Safety Act.
Hoyeck is being charged with failure to:
– ensure the health and safety of persons at or near the workplace;
– provide and maintain equipment, machines, materials or things that are properly equipped with safety devices;
– provide information, instruction, training, supervision and facilities as are necessary to the health or safety of the employees;
– ensure that the employees, supervisors and foremen, are made familiar with any health or safety hazards at the workplace;
– take every reasonable precaution so employees are not exposed to health or safety hazards;
– comply with the requirements of CSA Safety in Welding, Cutting and Allied Processes standard;
– ensure that a welding or allied process is performed by a designated competent person;
– ensure that the person operating the equipment has inspected the surrounding area to ensure adequate precautions have been taken to remove all hazardous material or processes that produce combustible, flammable or explosive material, dust, gas or vapour, and to prevent fire or explosion;
– ensure that no person performs a welding or allied process on a container, pipe, valve or fitting that holds or may have held an explosive, flammable or otherwise hazardous material, and that it is performed in accordance with a written work procedure;
– provide a flashback arrestors between the torch and fuel, gas and oxygen supply to prevent reverse flow and stop a flame from burning back into the supply lines;
– ensure that a written emergency procedure is developed in the event a hazardous substance escapes;
– ensure that a portable compressed gas cylinder is protected from falling and from having objects fall on it.

He is scheduled to appear in Dartmouth Provincial Court on October 6, 2015 to face the criminal charge. He will appear in Dartmouth Provincial Court on October 8, 2015 to face the charges under the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

‘This has been a long and painful process for the family. I want to thank them for their patience and understanding. Investigations can take time and I understand it can be difficult for everyone,’ said Labour and Advanced Education Minister, Kelly Regan. ‘I also want to acknowledge the collaboration and partnership between OHS officials and the police. They completed an exceptional investigation that led to these charges. I want to thank them.’

‘The charges under the criminal code and the OHS Act are significant and if there is a conviction could lead to considerable fines or jail time. This is a serious reminder to all workplace parties of the importance of workplace safety.’

Bill C-45, also known as the ‘Westray Bill’, was created as a result of the 1992 Westray coal mining disaster in Nova Scotia where 26 miners were killed after methane gas ignited causing an explosion. A Royal Commission of Inquiry was established to investigate the disaster. In 1998, the Royal Commission made 74 recommendations. The findings of this commission (in particular recommendation 73) were the movement that led to Bill C-45.

Source: Release

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