The National Post has put out a Victoria Times-Colonist article which examines what is expected from the release Tuesday, of an internal report into the events that led up to the sinking of the Queen of the North on March 22. 2006.
Described as a ‘blunt’ document, it’s said to not pull any punches and will provide the groundwork for an upcoming fact-finding investigation that could lead to disciplinary action at the Ferry Corporation.
The internal report is but the start of the expected stream of paperwork to come over the infamous night, also on the way is a Transportation Safety Board investigation report as well as an RCMP investigation that has been going on in conjunction with the Transport Canada’s investigation.
BC Ferries boss says report on sinking will be 'straightforward'
Cindy E. Harnett
Thursday, March 22, 2007
VICTORIA—BC Ferries' divisional inquiry - likely the most controversial and damning report to try to explain how the 8,800-tonne Queen of the North ferry slammed into an island a year ago today - is expected to be released Tuesday. Expect it to be blunt, says David Hahn, the corporation's president.
"I think there is a need for us to be very blunt, straightforward and giving, if you will, of all the information we have. That's the only way you can maintain confidence with the public," Mr. Hahn said.
The report is just one in a battery of investigations delving into the marine disaster that saw the ferry ram Gil Island March 22 and dump 101 passengers and crew into the tumultuous, rain-swept seas. About an hour later, the ferry plunged to the bottom of Wright Sound.
The bodies of Gerald Foisy and companion Shirley Rosette were never found and are part of the RCMP's missing person's investigation.
The Transportation Safety Board's report will make recommendations rather than lay blame. The initial draft is still in preparation with the final report's release months away.
But B.C. Ferries' divisional inquiry isn't expected to pull any punches. And it will provide the groundwork for a subsequent fact-finding investigation by the corporation, which could result in discipline, Mr. Hahn said.
"We'll be probably more critical of ourselves than the outside agencies like (the Transportation Safety Board)," Mr. Hahn said. "We're going to be very straightforward about the events and everything that was involved around the incident."
The ferry union, which will be officially shown the report just prior to its release, refused comment Wednesday on any investigations it has conducted or requested.
Transport Canada's investigation into the events leading to the sinking of the Queen of the North is in conjunction with the RCMP, said spokesman Rod Nelson.
Both federal agencies are awaiting the release of the report. Transport Canada could fine and suspend individuals under the Canada Shipping Act.
Victoria Times Colonist