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Burns Lake Sawmill owners drop appeal against WorkSafeBC over $1M penalty for 2012 explosion

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The owners of the Burns Lake Sawmill, which exploded six years ago and killed two men, have dropped their appeal towards WorkSafeBC.

WorkSafe BC fined Babine Forest Products Ltd. $1 million in 2012 as an administrative penalty.

READ MORE: Burns Lake sawmill should have been shut before blast: worker

In a release, the company said it was disappointed to receive the fine after the Crown counsel’s independent inquiry determined it could not have foreseen the explosion and exercised diligence in managing any risks.

The explosion, which injured 20 others, was blamed on igniting wood dust and poor weather conditions.

Ultimately, Babine Forest Products said it’s more important for them to respect the feelings of the employees than to spend legal fees fighting WorkSafe BC.

“We do not want to put anyone through additional distress reliving the tragic accident,” read the statement.

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“Since the accident, we have worked hard to develop a new, safe operation. We have installed millions of dollars of specialized equipment to make our operations cleaner and safer in relation to the wood dust risk.”

READ MORE: Scathing review of Burns Lake sawmill investigation