Investigation Into Kitimat Tugboat Tragedy Expands As Petition Tops 10k Signatures

‘I really strongly feel that the answers are at the bottom of the sea.’

Why did the MV Ingenika tugboat sink near Kitimat on February 11, killing two of the three people onboard? Not satisfied with the official response to the tragedy, the spouse of deceased crew member Troy Carlick-Pearson started an online petition demanding answers.

And with signatures on that petition now topping 10,000, the province says that it’s expanding the investigation. 

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“I really strongly feel that the answers are at the bottom of the sea,” Judy Carlick-Pearson told CBC. “There may be nothing but there may be something and we got to keep pushing on that.”

The Transportation Safety Board has completed a preliminary investigation, and now it wants to go further to find exactly why the sinking happened and whether there was a safety issue that could help prevent incidents like this in the future. 

Judy’s petition is asking authorities to recover the tug from the bottom of the sea. But neither the TSB nor the Canadian Coast Guard seem eager to do that just yet. 

“We don’t have the authority to order anyone to raise it,” TSB manager Mohan Raman has said. 

The Canadian Coast Guard explained in a statement that “So far efforts to locate the Ingenika have been unsuccessful…The suspected depth of the vessel would make any attempts at recovery difficult and very dangerous.”

But Judy has no plans to give up: “It’s going to be a lifelong mission of mine.”

Written by Skeena Strong

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