‘Someone could have been hurt’: Saskatoon resident speaks out about unfinished industrial work
SASKATOON -- Theresa Aubin-Singh, a resident in Saskatoon’s Lakeridge neighborhood was enjoying her weekend in her backyard when she noticed a part of her fence beside her neighbour’s yard had fallen over.
Worried that her cats could get out, she and her husband began fixing the fence and upon further inspection, they found an eight-foot hole in the neighbour’s yard running parallel with their fence hidden under a wooden board.
“My husband said, ‘You know this is a near miss. You could have gotten hurt,’ He then slid the board across and there was this massive gaping hole,” said Aubin-Singh.
Aubin-Singh said the holes were dug by Alberta based industrial company Chemco which was contracted by SaskTel to install fibre optic cables two years ago.
She spoke to her neighbours and found out the company left similar holes in multiple backyards. Aubin-Singh said many residents filled in the holes themselves or did not know about the holes as they were hidden in the bushes and trees.
“You expect them to do the work but to clean up after themselves. I have two grandsons; the neighbours next door have grandkids. Someone could have been hurt,” said Aubin-Singh, who is also upset at Chemco for damaging her steel fence to keep her cats in the yard.
A spokesperson for SaskTel confirmed Chemco did the work in Lakeridge.
“SaskTel and our contractors strive to conduct all network construction in a safe and professional manner and this included leaving work sites in a secure condition. Unfortunately, the work at this location was missed as a result of a change in contractors during the work stoppage for winter. SaskTel no longer has Chemco working on any of its projects,” spokesperson Michelle Englot said.
SaskTel says Chemco has since hired Axis Vac & HDD to fill in the holes and fix any damages to the yards and Chemco will incur the cost of the repairs.
“SaskTel apologizes for this error and we are currently reviewing this area to ensure there are no other missed locations. The SaskTel inspection process will also be reviewed to ensure situations such as this do not happen again,” added Englot.
A spokesperson with Chemco’s Saskatoon office declined comment.
Aubin-Singh says she is glad SaskTel was quick to fix the issue as soon as she called it in.
“You can’t forget things like that because that could cost somebody their life or a limb.”