Everett Cummings in a tribute video posted to dignitymemorial.com.

Everett Cummings in a tribute video posted to dignitymemorial.com.

Mechanic’s death at Fraser Surrey Docks leads to $200K fine for company, union says

Photos of rally outside Surrey court posted on ILWU’s ‘Kill A Worker Go To Jail’ Facebook page

Unionists rallied in Surrey Wednesday (April 14) in a banner-waving show of support for dockworker Everett Andrew Cummings, killed while on the job at Fraser Surrey Docks in July 2018.

A father of three, the heavyduty mechanic was 44 when he was crushed beneath the cab of the lift truck he was servicing, according to a petition for a coroner’s inquest launched by the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Canada (ILWU) on change.org.

Members of the union gathered outside Surrey provincial court for a hearing that involved employer DP World.

A judge decided to fine the company $200,000, according to ILWU-Canada president Rob Ashton.

The Dubai-based DP World recently acquired Fraser Surrey Docks from Macquarie Infrastructure Partners, in a deal announced in February 2020, more than two years after Cummings’ death.

“We stand in support of his family, and all families who have lost loved ones due to unsafe working conditions,” says a post on the union-launched Facebook page Kill A Worker Go To Jail.

The social-media post doesn’t mince words: “Today, Everett’s Employer is pleading guilty. But there is no dollar amount that can justify the murder of any worker on the job. The time for lip service is over. The time for action is now.”

(Story continues below)

Ashton said Cummings “was an extremely safety conscious and experienced heavyduty mechanic.”

Wednesday marked the second time in three weeks where members of the union have protested the death of a member “in a preventable dock accident,” according to Ashton, and the second time in three weeks “where a company has paid fines for their negligence.” The other death was of Don Jantz at Neptune Terminals, he noted.

Sent Tuesday (April 13), a news release from the union includes a statement from Cummings’ former wife, Desirae Knittle, to be read in court.

“We are the victims and we deserve something that resembles justice, something with significance,” Knittle stated. “Our lives, what has been taken from us, what we have endured and what we will continue to endure as a result of Everett’s death.

“We matter, we have to live through all of this and we deserve to feel justice in this outcome. My children, Everett’s children, sit before you today as you place an insignificant monetary value of their father’s life. Honestly, can you really look at them, and tell them this is justice?”

An obituary posted to dignitymemorial.com says Cummings “was a dedicated union member and was representatives of both the ILWU Local 502 and the IUOE Local 115. Everett was a loyal advocate for safety and fairness for all employees in the workplace.” The obituary includes a 30-minute tribute video.



tom.zillich@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Tom on Twitter

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

Just Posted

After Bobby Henderson apologized online for his comments to a Toronto reporter, the Langley Rivermen announced that he was no longer team coach and general manager and in fact, had ‘parted ways’ with the franchise in March. (file/Twitter)
Former Langley Rivermen coach and GM apologizes for comments to Toronto reporter

Bobby Henderson blames stress due to the pandemic for his ‘disparaging’ remarks

Nurses Ann Bason and Brandon Hunt stand outside the new Langley Memorial Hospital entrance (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)
Working during a pandemic; what it’s like for two nurses at Langley Memorial Hospital

COVID has changed a lot, but not their devotion to their profession

Kay Palmer and Doris Riedweg were nurses at Langley Memorial Hospital for several years. (Heather Colpitts/Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Retired Langley nurses loves caring careers

Langley Hospital Heritage Committee members share historical perspective for National Nurses Week

Barbara-Ann Kubb is a nurse and manager at the long-term care facilities that include Langley's hospice. (Matthew Claxton/Langley Advance Times)
Langley hospice nurses feel calling for end-of-life care

It’s a tough job, but one that has rewards, says Langley hospice nursing manager

(The Canadian Press)
Trudeau won’t say whether Canada supports patent waiver for COVID-19 vaccines

‘Canada is at the table to help find a solution’

Twenty-nine staff members at Sunrise Poultry Processors Ltd. in Newton have tested positive for the virus, according to an information bulletin from Fraser Health Saturday (May 8). The health authority issued a 10-day closure order, effective May 7. (Image: Google Maps)
29 staff test positive for COVID-19 at Surrey poultry processing plant

Meantime, outbreak over at Surrey Memorial Hospital

A map showing where the most number of cases were recorded from April 23 to 29. This map, revealing a breakdown of infections by neighborhood, was pulled from a data package leaked to the Vancouver Sun last week (and independently verified).
36 Abbotsford schools flagged for COVID-19 exposures in the last 2 weeks, shattering record

Clearbrook Elementary recorded an ‘exposure’ on all 11 school days

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Canada’s chief public health officer is reminding Canadians even those who are fully vaccinated are not immune from transmitting the COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s top doctor warns full vaccination does not equal full protection from COVID-19

Post-inoculation, Theresa Tam says the risk of asymptomatic infection and transmission is far lower but not obsolete

The dash cam footage, taken May 7 at 8:18 a.m. belonged to the driver of a southbound vehicle that recently travelled out of the tunnel. (Reddit/Screen grab)
VIDEO: Dash cam captures dramatic rollover crash on Highway 99

Only one person sustained injuries from the collision, says B.C. Ambulance Services

Chevy stranded on a ledge above a rocky canyon at Mimi Falls near Logan Lake, April 28, 2021. (Photo credit: Margot Wikjord)
Police officer and fire chief team up in risky rescue of stranded dog near Logan Lake

Chevy, a rescue dog, needed rescuing again after getting stuck on a ledge above rocky canyon

Police were on the scene of a fatal shooting in Abbotsford. (Black Press Media files)
B.C. government to give more than $8 million for programs to curb gang violence

221 not-for-profit projects led by local governments and school districts among others will receive a one-time grant

<a href="Facebook users reported seeing a body on the side of the road this morning." target="_blank"></a>Facebook users reported seeing a body on the side of the road this morning. (File photo)
Man killed in fatal hit-and-run collision between Abbotsford and Chilliwack

Body reported at 6 a.m., police close North Parallel Road, single highway lane as they investigate

Most Read