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The Saint John Law Courts building. Image: Brad Perry

AIM Recycling makes first court appearance in man’s death

By Brad Perry Mar 13, 2023 | 1:00 PM

A metal recycling company facing charges following a workplace death in Saint John has had its case adjourned.

American Iron & Metal (AIM Recycling) is charged in the death of 60-year-old Darrell Richards.

Richards suffered life-threatening injuries while working at the company’s west Saint John facility on June 30, 2022. He died in the hospital the next day, according to police.

AIM Recycling now faces four charges under the province’s Occupational Health and Safety Act.

  • Failing to take every reasonable precaution to ensure the health and safety of Richards;
  • Failing to acquaint an employee with any hazard related to the handling and disposal of a calender roll;
  • Failing to provide the information that is necessary to ensure an employee’s health and safety; and
  • Failing to ensure that work is competently supervised and that supervisors have sufficient knowledge.

A lawyer representing AIM Recycling asked for an adjournment during a brief court appearance on Monday.

Dawson Harrison told the court they had received disclosure from the Crown but needed more time to review it.

The judge granted the adjournment and set the case over until April 11 for plea.

Laragh Dooley, executive director of corporate communications for WorkSafeNB, said a violation of the act carries a maximum penalty of $250,000.

Dooley said the highest penalty to date in New Brunswick for a violation of the act has been $125,000.

Richards’s death was the second workplace fatality at the Saint John facility in less than a year. A man, who has never been identified, died in a separate incident in late November 2021.

Owner Herb Black has said that “to his knowledge” nothing could have been done to prevent either death, adding his operations are “extremely safe.”

“It’s just coincidence or an act of God that things happen,” Black told our newsroom in July.

Black said workers at the facility know they are safe and that these deaths were accidental.

“You could have an accident coming to work. You could get hit by a bus.”


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