City Wants 'Comprehensive' Review Of Refinery Explosion

Posted on Tuesday, October 9, 2018 23:06 PM

Saint John council is calling for a "comprehensive after-event review" of Monday's explosion at the Irving Oil Refinery.

At Tuesday night's meeting, council agreed to send a letter to the province and Irving Oil, on behalf of fire Chief Kevin Clifford, asking for the review.

When asked about the review after the meeting, Mayor Don Darling was not sure what it would entail but said the city needs to be part of it.

"I have no doubt it was a stellar response," Darling said, "but I also believe that there's always an opportunity to do better or learn at least from our response."

The review is just one part of what Darling calls the "critically important" post-phase of Monday's event.

He also wants a redefined relationship with the city's industrial partners and a comprehensive review of emergency preparedness plans.

"Are we ready? Is the chief satisfied with our emergency preparedness?" Darling said. "I don't think we are satisfied, just to be blunt."

"It's just my understanding that, as of today, that there would be gaps in those emergency preparedness plans to the satisfaction of the head of our Saint John EMO [Kevin Clifford]."

Darling said Clifford would be the best person to comment on specifics, however, he was unavailable after the meeting.

The mayor also committed to reviewing the city's communications plans and looking at every opportunity to improve.

"In the constructive feedback that I've received from people, I get it," Darling said. "I understand that, from their perspective, there were gaps — should I leave my house, shouldn't I leave my house — I totally get it."