Aquilinis appealing fines from WorkSafeBC

Two fines totalled $125,000

Workers harvest cranberries on a Golden Eagle farm site last year. The company Geri Partnership – Golden Eagle Ranch was fined a total of $125

Geri Partnership – Golden Eagle Ranch, part of the Aquilini group of companies, is appealing the financial penalties levied against it by WorkSafeBC last May.

One fine of $62,701 was levied for allegedly not providing an effective means of communication between workers and first-aid attendants at 14318 Neaves Rd., last September 2010.

WorkSafeBC levied another fine of the same amount for allegedly not maintaining vehicles and for allegedly failing to ensure a driver was properly licensed at the company’s jobsite at 16351 Aquilini Ave., following an inspection in July 2010.

A WorkSafeBC report about an inspection of the 1988 Ford flat deck truck found unsecured pallets on the back and that the operator of the vehicle had neither a B.C. nor a Mexican driver’s licence.

Another worker was seen riding on the deck of the flatbed, holding on to the bulkhead when the vehicle was stopped on Neaves Road.

The inspection was a joint effort involving Commercial Vehicle Safety Enforcement, Employment Standards Branch, the RCMP and WorkSafeBC.

According to the report, the truck had no left rear light, the right master brake cylinder was empty, the brake failure warning light stayed on, there was no outside left door handle release, while the inside handle didn’t work and the parking brake air line was crimped. The report said there was no licencing or insurance on the vehicle, which was taken out of service.

A WorkSafeBC spokesman confirmed the company has appealed both fines and said decisions on them will be made in a reasonable time frame.

Aquilini Investment Group wasn’t available for comment.

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