Mushroom farm operators fined $350,000 following deaths
Three operators of a Langley mushroom farm have been fined $350,000 in B.C. provincial court after pleading guilty to charges linked to the death of three workers.
The three men died after inhaling fatal doses of toxic fumes in September, 2008. Two other workers were left with brain damage.
The three operators of the A-1 Mushroom Substratum operation — Ha Qua Truong, Van Thi Truong and Phinh Hwu Doan — pleaded guilty earlier this year to ten of 29 charges under the Workers Compensation Act and occupational health and safety regulations.
Outside the provincial court in Surrey on Friday morning, the daughter of one of the men left with brain damage said she can't accept that the operators of the farm will only have fines to pay.
Tracey Phan said she and her sister struggle daily knowing their father Michael Phan won't be there for them as they get older.
"I don't understand why all this has happened and there's still no jail time because money doesn't solve my problems. I can have a bunch of money and it doesn't help me because my dad isn't there," said Phan.
B.C. Federation of Labour president Jim Sinclair also said a fine was not enough.
"I believe that we all feel that some form, even token jail term, would have sent a message to an industry that clearly has serious health and safety problems that this form of neglect leading to death is unacceptable in British Columbia."