The Slocan River. File photo

Province appeals decision to allow Lemon Creek class action suit

Court action aims to compensate 2500 people affected by the fuel spill

Robert Kirk and 2,500 other people in the Slocan Valley may not get their day in court after all.

The provincial government has appealed a 2017 Supreme Court of B.C. decision that gave the go-ahead to a class action suit by the Slocan Valley farmer on behalf of all residents affected by pollution from the Lemon Creek fuel spill.

This case is entirely separate from one in which the federal government is prosecuting the fuel company, the province, and the fuel truck driver.

Both cases stem from an incident in 2013 when a tanker truck overturned into Lemon Creek, spilling 33,000 litres of jet fuel.

The case before the B.C. Court of Appeal does not deal with the details of the spill, but rather challenges the court’s decision to allow a class action suit.

In a class action lawsuit, the complainants do not need to be individually signed onto the suit or be named in it. In this case, Kirk is pursuing the case on behalf of everyone who lived in the area that was evacuated after the spill.

The case seeks damages from the four defendants: the provincial government, Transwest Helicopters, fuel truck driver Danny LaSante, and fuel truck owner/contractor Executive Flight Centre.

All four are jointly appealing the decision to allow the class action.

Arguments in the appeal were heard last month in Vancouver, and the judge’s decision will be announced at a later date.

The appellants argued that the 2,500 residents did not meet the definition of an identifiable class and that Kirk did not legally qualify as a representative of that class. They also argued the group’s case does not meet the required definition of issues held in common by members of a class.

Related: Lemon Creek class action suit can proceed, court says



bill.metcalfe@nelsonstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Work begins on new affordable housing building in Nelson

The 39-unit project is expected to be complete by July 2021

‘I knew what he wanted’: Man recalls black bear chasing him up tree in Slocan Valley

Francis Levasseur is no stranger to the outdoors, but a recent run-in with a bear caused quite a scare

No passenger flights at West Kootenay Regional Airport until at least September

This is the third time Air Canada has announced changes to flight operations out of the airport

Morning Start: 180 different bird species exist in Kootenay National Park

Here is your Kootenays’ morning start for Friday, May 29

Retiring staff feted by School District 8

Teachers, custodians and staff were honoured Thursday

Only four new COVID-19 cases, 228 active across B.C.

Health officials watching as activities ramp up

Help the Nelson Star continue its mission to provide trusted local news

Black Press is now accepting donations to keep its papers operating

Feds looking at ways to reunite families amid COVID-19 border restrictions with U.S.

Some families with members of dual-citizenship have become separated due to the pandemic

Condition in kids with possible COVID-19 link being studied in Canada

This month, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued an alert to doctors about MIS-C

COVID cancelled their wedding plans, so they married on a BC mountaintop

Ceremony was live streamed to friends and family around the world

Trudeau acknowledges racial unrest in U.S.; ‘We also have work to do in Canada’

‘Anti-black racism, racism, is real; it’s in the United States, but it’s also in Canada,’ Trudeau says

State of Local Emergency declared for Boundary as communities brace for river flooding

Warm weather and heavy rain could cause sections of Kettle River system to swell beyond 2018 levels

Large cruise ships barred from Canadian waters until end of October: Garneau

Last year 140 cruise ships brought more than two million visitors to Canadian ports

Minneapolis cop who knelt on man’s neck charged with murder

Arrest comes after three days of protests, which escalated in violence as demonstrators torched a police precinct

Most Read