Owner of trucking company involved in Humboldt Broncos crash charged

Owner of trucking company involved in Humboldt Broncos crash charged
Owner of trucking company involved in Humboldt crash charged
The owner of the Alberta trucking company involved in the fatal Humboldt Broncos bus crash has been charged.

Alberta Transportation Minister Brian Mason said Wednesday that Sukhmander Singh of Adesh Deol Trucking faces charges of non-compliance with various federal and provincial safety regulations.

“The charges follow an investigation that was completed by Alberta Transportation into the collision,” Mason said. “The investigation found multiple instances of non-compliance of various transportation regulatory requirements in a six-month period.”

Sixteen people were killed and 13 were injured in rural Saskatchewan six months ago when their bus was involved in a crash with a semi-truck owned by the Calgary-based company.

Jaskirat Singh Sidhu, who was driving the semi unit, was charged earlier this year with dangerous driving causing death and dangerous driving causing bodily harm.

Officials with Alberta Transportation said eight charges have now been laid against the trucking company owner.

They include seven federal charges: two counts of failing to maintain logs for drivers hours of service, three counts of failing to monitor the compliance of a driver under safety regulations, and two counts of having more than one daily log for any day. The eighth charge under provincial regulations alleges failure to have or follow a written safety program.

A department spokesman said a federal Crown lawyer will be handling the prosecution on the charges against the owner.

The maximum penalty for a federal hours of service failing is $5,000 per offence, while the provincial charge carries a $310 penalty. A court can, however, use discretion to impose a penalty up to $2,000.

“It’s a good start,” he said. “Some of the people who did the charging need to look at that, too, because why did it get to that point? It’s still happening.”

Shumlanski said governments across the country need to look at why licences are being handed out so easily.

Mason, citing the Broncos crash as the reason, said the province is making driver training for new commercial truckers and bus drivers mandatory.

“That incident prompted jurisdictions across Canada to take a closer look at their safety practices,” he said. “Alberta Transportation was already in the process of considering several improvements to traffic safety in our province.”

READ MORE: Alberta government taking back driver’s licence road testing from private industry

The province said the training, which will include a standardized curriculum, will be mandatory as of March 1.

“New requirements for trucking companies based in Alberta will enhance safety on the roads right across the continent,” Mason said.

He said the province will eliminate a temporary safety fitness certificate and require all new commercial carriers to prove compliance with transportation safety regulations before they start operating. They will also be required to renew it every three years.

Earlier this month, Alberta also announced that it will ditch its privatized model for road testing and will administer road exams directly to new drivers.

Officials said testers will be government employees, and there will be more oversight to ensure that road exams are conducted fairly and consistently.

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The owner of the Calgary-based trucking company involved in the fatal Humboldt Broncos bus crash has been charged. 

Alberta Transportation Minister Brian Mason says Sukhmander Singh, owner and director of Adesh Deol Trucking Ltd., faces eight counts of failing to comply with various safety and log-keeping regulations. 

"The charges follow an investigation that was completed by Alberta Transportation into the collision," Mason said Wednesday.

"The investigation found multiple instances of non-compliance of various transportation regulatory requirements in a six-month period."

Sixteen people were killed and 13 were injured when an Adesh-owned semi-trailer and the Broncos hockey bus collided in Saskatchewan last April.

'It's still the Wild West out there,' father of Humboldt crash victim says after charges laidDriver of semi in Humboldt Broncos bus crash faces 29 chargesCBC InvestigatesOwner of company linked to Humboldt crash recruiting drivers amid probeThe semi's driver, Jaskirat Singh Sidhu, was previously charged with multiple counts of both dangerous operation of a motor vehicle causing death and dangerous operation of motor vehicle causing bodily injury.

The case will be handled by a federal Crown prosecutor because it involves both federal and provincial regulations, according to an Alberta Transportation spokesperson.

They include seven federal charges: two counts of failing to maintain logs for drivers' hours of service, three counts of failing to monitor the compliance of a driver under safety regulations, and two counts of having more than one daily log for any day.

The eighth charge, under provincial regulations, alleges failure to have or follow a written safety program. 

The maximum penalty for a federal hours of service failing is $5,000 per offence, while the provincial charge carries a $310 penalty. A court can, however, use discretion to impose a penalty up to $2,000.

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