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Co-operation foremost as gangway gives way

Lorraine Graves   Jul-11-2017

The gangway at popular fish and chips barge buckled on July 9. Investigating agency, WorkSafe BC, reports no serious injuries. Cooperation amongst agencies and bystanders shows Canadian spirit at its finest.

Photo by Chung Chow

Thirty people were marooned on a barge in Steveston harbour July 9, when the gangway to Pajo’s Fish and Chips bent in half, dipping the middle section into the water.

Of the six people on the walkway at the time, an observer told the Sentinel photographer, two had scrapes and bruises.



The call came in at 2:55 p.m. BC Ambulance Service says and they dispatched two ambulances. They took one person to hospital.

Richmond RCMP spokesperson Dennis Hwang noted the spirit of cooperation, “There was a good response by a number of different agencies.” He calls it “a very coordinated effort.”

In an official statement it was clear that the RCMP are not investigating because there was no criminal activity suspected.

WorkSafe BC is investigating and said in a statement July 10, “WorkSafeBC attended the site this morning. The incident occurred yesterday and there were no injuries. An Inspection Report is being written by a WorkSafeBC Prevention Field Services Officer. It will indicate if there were any violations of theWorkers Compensation Act or the Occupational Health and Safety Regulation,and if any orders will be issued.”

According to the Steveston Harbour Authority, they do not own the gangway and thus are not responsible for its inspection or maintenance.

A statement on Pajo’s website said in part, “We are working with appropriate groups to determine the cause and will remain closed until further notice. Our thoughts are with those injured and we wish them a speedy recovery. We want to thank our staff, patrons, and local first responders for their quick response in assisting those who were on the ramp at the time.”

According to someone on scene, the culture of cooperation extended to bystanders on the shore who pitched in, finding planks to use as a make-shift gangway to rescue the people marooned a few metres offshore on the Pajo’s barge.

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