May 05, 2014 - 12:23 PM
KAMLOOPS - The province was claiming more than $340,000 in mature timber was lost in a blaze sparked by a train near Ashcroft in 2005, but a panel of judges disagreed last week, instead handing down a fine of only $11,000 and a bill for $6,252 in lost timber value.
In July 2005 a Canadian National Railway train sparked a fire near Ashcroft that damaged and destroyed crown timber. The company was found at fault and was told the liability for the lost timber was $254,680.
After an appeal the company was charged just $6,252 for the future value of the timber (which was salvaged in the fall of 2006 through the summer of 2007), as decided by the Forest Appeals Commission.
The province then appealed the appeal, saying the decision was based on an unreasonable interpretation of the Forest Act. A panel of three judges disagreed Thursday, May 1, announcing the Court of Appeal decision to dismiss the appeal, noting they could not find the interpretation made by the Forest Appeals Commission unreasonable.
The railway company will now pay the original penalty of $11,000 (under the Wildfire Act) and the lost timber value of just over $6,250.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014