PEO and the Elliot Lake Inquiry
The Elliot Lake Commission of Inquiry was established on July 19, 2012 by the Ontario government under the Public Inquiries Act, 2009. Its mandate is to inquire into and report on events surrounding the collapse on June 23, 2012, of part of the Algo Centre Mall in Elliot Lake.
The Commission is to make recommendations to prevent such occurrences in the future, without expressing conclusions about civil or criminal liability of any person or organization. The Honourable Paul R. Bélanger was appointed Commissioner.
The public hearings of the Inquiry are expected to start in the week of March 4, 2013.
As the regulator of professional engineering in Ontario, PEO requested and was granted standing in Part I of the Inquiry, which deals with events prior to the collapse. PEO has also opened its own investigations related to the mall collapse.
In September 2012, PEO received from the Commission a Summons to Produce documents relating to complaints received and disciplinary action taken in relation to particular PEO licence and certificate holders. PEO is cooperating fully with the Inquiry and submitted requested documents to the Commission. However, PEO also requested an Order under section 10(4) of thePublic Inquiries Act. PEO’s request was that those named in PEO’s documents be given notice and the opportunity to consent to public disclosure or make submissions to the Commission regarding use of their information. Under section 38(1)(c) of the Professional Engineers Act, PEO must obtain consent from an affected party prior to releasing information not otherwise public that it obtains in the course of administering the act. In requesting an order under section 10(4) of the Public Inquiries Act, PEO highlighted this obligation and requested that the Commission similarly give notice and an opportunity to consent or make submissions to those named in PEO’s documents, prior to any pre-hearing release of the documents.
The Commission heard submissions on disclosure of information on December 17, 2012.
On January 8, 2013, the Commission ruled that PEO’s obligations for handling information it collects under the Professional Engineers Act do not apply to the Commission’s handling of the same information under the Public Inquiries Act.
- Questions and answers about the Elliot Lake Inquiry and PEO’s involvement
- Elliot Lake mall collapse may change rules for engineers; Professional Engineers of Ontario makes recommendations at public inquiry into Elliot Lake tragedy - CBC News, August 14, 2013
- CBC Radio interview with PEO President Annette Bergeron, P.Eng., MBA (June 19, 2013)
Engineering Dimensions’ coverage of PEO’s involvement
- "PEO to participate in Elliot Lake inquiry policy roundtables" (Nov/Dec 2013)
- "Structural specialist designation central to mall collapse recommendations" (Sept/Oct 2013)
- "Mall collapse still reverberates one year later" (July/Aug 2013)
- "Forensic engineering report on mall collapse recommends systematic inspection regime" (May/June 2013)
- "Regulator welcomes commission ruling on release of information" (Mar/Apr 2013)
- “Collapses prompt call for stepped up engineering oversight” (Sept/Oct 2012)
- "PEO granted standing in Elliot Lake Inquiry, responds to summons to produce documents" (Jan/Feb 2013)
PEO’s Elliot Lake media releases
- “Professional Engineers Ontario Launches Investigations, Lends Support to Effort to Determine Cause of Algo Centre Mall Collapse in Elliot Lake” (September 10, 2012)
- "Engineering Regulator welcomes ruling from Elliot Lake Commission of Inquiry" (January 9, 2013)
- "Commissioner of Elliot Lake Inquiry Endorses Recommendations of Professional Engineers Ontario to Strengthen Regulation of Profession" (October 15, 2014)
Correspondence and submissions relating to PEO’s involvement in the Elliot Lake Commission of Inquiry
- PEO’s offer to assist Commissioner Paul R. Bélanger
- PEO’s Application for Standing
- Request for Order under Section 10(4) Public Inquiries Act, 2009
- PEO’s Overview Report to the Elliot Lake Commission of Inquiry
- PEO’s Written Submission to the Elliot Lake Commission of Inquiry
- PEO's Submission to the Elliot Lake Policy Roundtable
- Elliot Lake Commission of Inquiry (official website of the Commission)