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Thu, Jun 30, 2022 21:04
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Independent contractor killed at Mercer Peace River Pulp Mill

PEACE RIVER, Alberta (News release) -- A 53-year-old man working at a pulp mill in northwestern Alberta is dead after a workplace accident.

Mercer International Incorporated said an independent contractor's employee working at the Peace River Pulp Mill was killed Saturday.

RCMP say officers responded to the mill at 1:50 a.m. to assist and determined there was no foul play. Provincial occupational health and safety officials told CTV News Edmonton investigators were first notified about the accident around 3 a.m.

"We are saddened about the loss of life of one of our contractor's employees and our thoughts are with the individual's family and colleagues," said Roger Ashfield, managing director of the mill.

"An investigation of the accident has been started and we are working with the authorities and the contracting company to find out how this tragic incident occurred," Ashfield added in a statement.

"Mercer's emergency procedures were immediately activated and our industrial safety and occupational health personnel were involved for support."

On Thursday, the mill had finished its two-week-long annual shutdown to complete several construction projects.

David Ure, senior vice president finance for Mercer International, confirmed to local media that the contractor was connected to work related to the maintenance shutdown.

"While the maintenance shutdown concluded several days ago and the mill had returned to normal operation, the contractor was on site completing certain elements of its work," Ure added.

"The contractor firm is familiar with our site and operations," he said.

Mercer operates plants producing different forest products, bioproducts, and green electricity across Canada, Germany, Australia, and the U.S. The mill in Peace River produces softwood and hardwood pulp.

No further information was available.

****

Mercer's news release

Mercer International Inc. is deeply saddened to announce that an independent contractor's employee suffered a tragic and fatal workplace accident at our Peace River mill in Peace River, Alberta on June 11, 2022. Mercer has initiated an incident investigation and is fully cooperating with the authorities.

"We are saddened about the loss of life of one of our contractor's employees and our thoughts are with the individual's family and colleagues. An investigation of the accident has been started and we are working with the authorities and the contracting company to find out how this tragic incident occurred," stated Roger Ashfield, Managing Director of Mercer Peace River. "Mercer's emergency procedures were immediately activated and our industrial safety and occupational health personnel were involved for support."

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