ADM must make public safety its priority

In response to the tragedy that claimed a man’s life at Mirabel Airport on October 18, Jean-Denis Garon, Member of Parliament for Mirabel, expressed his condolences to the victim’s family and saluted the bravery of the firefighter who tried to rescue him. He also called on Aéroports de Montréal (ADM) to account for its decision to prohibit its own firefighters from responding. Jean-Denis Garon, Bloc Québécois Transport Critic Xavier Barsalou-Duval, and PSAC-Quebec Regional Executive Vice-President Yvon Barrière spoke out to demand that ADM take action to ensure public safety.

The following is an excerpt from Jean-Denis Garon’s December 13 statement to the House of Commons:

“If Aéroports de Montréal had allowed its firefighters to intervene seven minutes earlier, a human life could have been saved. There are only four firefighters on duty at Dorval […] and there are two on duty at Mirabel. That is nowhere near enough. These firefighters are concerned about public safety. This was the canary in the coal mine, warning us of the dangers of doing nothing. We must not wait for the next tragedy; we must act.”

“This is totally unacceptable. Human lives are at stake here. This is a matter of civil liability,” said Yvon Barrière, PSAC-Quebec Regional Executive Vice-President. “Aéroports de Montréal keeps talking about risk management, but falls far short of international standards. Is ADM waiting for a new Lac-Mégantic to happen?”

“The Minister of Transport will have to take strong action and hold ADM accountable for the decisions that led to this tragedy. Unless more manpower and resources are deployed to ensure people are safe, the worst could happen again,” said Xavier Barsalou-Duval.

“I have spoken out on several occasions against the staffing cuts and lack of resources at Mirabel Airport. We will work to ensure that the Department of Transportation calls on ADM promptly to remedy the situation. We’ll make sure it gets done,” concluded the MP for Mirabel.