Mount Polley mine owner sues engineering firms over tailings dam failure – by Laura Kane (Vancouver Sun – July 9, 2016)

The Canadian Press – VANCOUVER — The owner of the Mount Polley mine in British Columbia’s Interior has sued two engineering firms for damages over a disastrous dam collapse two years ago.

Imperial Metals (TSX:III) has filed a lawsuit in B.C. Supreme Court alleging negligence and breach of contract by Knight Piesold and AMEC, now Amec Foster Wheeler. None of the allegations has been proven in court and neither company has filed a statement of defence.

The lawsuit alleges a flawed tailings storage facility was designed and monitored by Knight Piesold from the late 1980s to 2011, and then by AMEC until its collapse in August 2014.

“Each of the defendants failed to undertake necessary, proper and reasonable investigation of the subsurface conditions underlying the (tailings storage facility) prior to and during its phased construction and operation,” the suit says.

As a result, the suit alleges, the facility had an inadequate safety standard, despite both companies repeatedly providing Imperial Metals with reports that claimed it was safe.

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