Barrie ON (5/10/2019) – Convicted – Penner International Inc.
Court Location – Barrie
Description of Offence – The conviction relates to permitting the discharge of a contaminant into the natural environment that was likely to cause an adverse effect.
Date of Offence – During the period beginning on or about July 20, 2017 and ending on or about July 21, 2017.
Date of Conviction – April 15, 2019
Penalty Imposed – Penner International Inc. was convicted of one violation under the Environmental Protection Act and was fined $100,000 plus a victim fine surcharge of $25,000 and was given 12 months to pay.
Penner International Inc. is a transport truck company that offers services throughout the United States and Canada.
On July 20, 2017, a Penner tractor-trailer driven by independent contractor Michael Wollman was heading north on Highway 400 when it rear-ended a pick-up truck that swerved in front of it, ultimately leading to a spill of solvent VORTEX WPM onto the highway 1 kilometre south of Highway 88 in the Town of Bradford West Gwillimbury.
The solvent had been picked up earlier on the same date, at a Mississauga distribution company.
The Mississauga distribution company loaded the trailer with twelve stainless steel 1500-kilogram totes containing the solvent but did not secure them to the trailer. Mr. Wollmann did not inquire as to whether the totes were secured or not before he closed the doors to the trailer and drove off.
During transport and at the time of the rear-ending incident, as the totes were not properly secured, they shifted and the valves on two of the totes were knocked open. Solvent spilled from the trailer onto the highway and some also ran down gradient onto the soil of an adjacent construction site.
A one-kilometre evacuation zone was also established around the spill site. The closure remained in force for 10.5 hours, and the construction site’s operations were affected for a few days.
The ministry’s Investigations and Enforcement Branch investigated and laid one charge which resulted in one conviction.
Media Contacts: Members of the media: Gary Wheeler Communications Branch (416) 314-6666; Contact information for the general public: 416-325-4000 or 1-800-565-4923