Public Works and Government Services Canada

Public Works and Government Services Canada

October 20, 2009 18:17 ET

Cliff Heating Plant Update

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 20, 2009) - There was an explosion at the Cliff Heating Plant on October 19, which has resulted in the death of one PWGSC employee and injury of two others. The two injured employees have been treated and released from hospital.

The Government of Canada sends out its thoughts and sincerest condolences to the family and colleagues of the deceased individual.

The plant is currently shut down, and the Department is cooperating with the Fire Marshall, Ontario Ministry of Labour and responsible authorities as they conduct the investigation into the cause of the explosion.

The plant building has been declared structurally safe, and the Department is currently working with the Ontario Fire Marshall's office to test the air and debris in the building before allowing workers to return to the building.

Without compromising anyone's safety, we will work as quickly as possible to bring the plant back on-line. Once access to the plant building has been granted, workers will inspect, and if possible re-start, the four remaining boilers. The Department is also developing other options to maintain heat in case the boilers cannot be quickly brought back on line.

In the meantime, the facilities normally served by the plant, including many Parliamentary Precinct buildings, 240 Sparks, and the Department of National Defence Headquarters on Colonel By Drive, are receiving heat and hot water from one of PWGSC's alternate sites in Gatineau. The East and West Memorial Buildings are served solely by the Cliff Plant, where alternative heating arrangements are being explored.

Temperatures and hot water supply in all affected facilities are being closely monitored to ensure the occupants' safety and well-being. The Department is also taking measures to conserve heat, such as leaving lights on and reducing intake of outside air, in those buildings until full heating is restored.

PWGSC will be offering a media briefing tomorrow, October 21, at 11:00 a.m.

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  • Public Works and Government Services Canada
    Media Relations