A wise man once told me that the best thing for any organization to do when facing a potentially explosive public relations issue was to “tell the truth, tell it all, and tell it damn quick.”
Then, a ministry employee said ” no significant structural issues were identified.”
And when it was discovered major structural repairs were about to start on a 4th wall, repairs that include building a new reinforced wall and inserting soil anchors, the minister said they were routine maintenance and attacked the NDP for not building anything when they were in government…
Today we get a little closer to the truth with a story from Jane Seyd of the North Shore News:
Ashok Bhatti, district manager for the Ministry of Transportation and Highways south coast region, said repairs are needed because a review of the project showed the contractor who built the wall — Peter Kiewit and Sons — used parts in the retaining wall that do not meet ministry standards. Bhatti said the wall has been tested by engineers, and there are no safety concerns. But over the lifespan of the highway, problems could develop….”
This just brings another level of questions for the young minister of transportation, Todd Stone, because this manager just opened a huge can of worms.
What parts are faulty?
Does the MOT manager mean parts below engineered level or parts of faulty material?
What about faulty installation?
Over compacted, drainage under engineered or wrongly changed? And on, and on…. you get the picture.Is it is a matter of Kiewit cutting costs by using materials that were less than what was called for? Were they aware of the faulty parts?
Where is the due diligence of the government? What about the INDEPENDENT Quality Control guy who was on Kiewit’s payroll? Who signed off on all these materials?
And since it’s often the case that many of the same materials and components used on a major infrastructure project are sourced from the same supplier, the ministry now needs to come clean on every single detail. It doesn’t matter if Kiewit is paying for this. It matters that this even happened in the first place.
Somebody has some explaining to do, and this time the people deserve to hear an actual answer, not more denial,deflection and discrediting.
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