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Nunavut mine fined over 2018 death of haul truck driver

Baffinland Iron Mines Corporation must pay $170,000 in relation to the 2018 death of a mine worker who was operating heavy equipment at the Mary River mine.

Baffinland pleads guilty to unsafe work practices after truck accident kills worker

Baffinland Iron Mines Corporation is fined for breaching the Nunavut Mine Health and Safety Act, in relation to the 2018 death of a haul truck driver. (CBC)

Baffinland Iron Mines Corporation must pay $170,000 in relation to the 2018 death of a worker who was operating heavy equipment at the Mary River mine.   

Tony Anker of Ontario was 63 when he died in a vehicle accident at Mary River in December 2018. 

"The incident was the result of a combination of factors, including speed, load weight, downhill gradient and a lack of training to operate the loaded equipment in the existing conditions at the mine," the Worker's Safety and Compensation Commission said in a news release Feb. 18. 

The company pleaded guilty to violating a section of the Nunavut Mine Health and Safety Act that requires mine owners to keep a workplace safe, through practices that don't "present undue risk to health."

For corporations, fines for this violation can be up to $500,000.

Sentencing took place Feb. 15 in the Nunavut Court of Justice.

Court documents from 2019 said Anker was killed while driving a rock haul truck along a main work road at the iron ore mine on northern Baffin Island. The documents called the conditions unsafe. 

"Training should have included instruction for operation of the equipment in the specific conditions at the mine," the news release said.

The company is also charged with a 15 per cent victim surcharge that is to be paid to the territory's Workers' Protection Fund. 

"Baffinland cooperated with the investigation and immediately implemented several interim orders that have remained in place following restart of the mine," the release said. 

The mine did its own investigation and made safety changes, the release said.

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