Sunrise Propane fined $5.3M for deadly 2008 explosion

TORONTO -- A court has imposed $5.3 million in fines on Sunrise Propane, the Ontario company convicted in a deadly explosion at a Toronto propane plant, and its directors.

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Sunrise Propane and its directors Shay Ben-Moshe and Valery Belahov were found guilty in June 2013 of nine provincial offences related to the deadly 2008 blast that forced thousands of people from their homes.

Twenty-five-year-old employee Parminder Saini died in the blast and a 55-year-old firefighter who responded to the emergency on his day off died of a heart attack.

The court ruled that Sunrise failed to provide safety training and a safe working environment, discharged a contaminant and contravened a number of provincial orders related to the cleanup after the blast.

The court also found that Ben-Moshe and Belahov failed to take all reasonable care to prevent the company from flouting those orders.

The trial heard that, according to the government, the initial blast took place when propane vapours ignited during a risky truck-to-truck propane transfer.



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