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Ont. Federation of Labour wants criminal probe into York U rig collapse

The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) has asked Toronto police to launch a full criminal investigation into a drilling rig collapse at York University that killed 24-year-old Kyle Knox.

“Every worker who is killed at work deserves to have their death investigated through the lens of C-45 and the Criminal Code. Their family deserves to know the police have done more than rule out foul play, that they have looked at criminal negligence by the employer as a possible cause,” OFL President Sid Ryan said in a statement Wednesday.

Knox was killed Tuesday when a 200,000-pound drilling rig collapsed at a construction site of a new TTC subway station next to the business school at York. He was operating a loader when he was crushed by the rig.

The Criminal Code was amended seven years ago through Bill C-45 to include special criminal negligence provisions for companies that don’t ensure the health and safety of their workers. There have been no convictions in Ontario since, according to the OFL.

Knox’s body was removed from the scene on Wednesday. He was just one week away from writing a test to make him an official crane operator while working as an apprentice for Anchor Shoring & Caissons Ltd.

Five others were hurt in the accident. Work at the site has been put on hold as the Ministry of Labour investigates.