Family members of a 26-year-old window washer who fell at least seven storeys from a Winnipeg apartment building are relieved he is in stable condition, according to the man's employer.
Jim St. Godard, owner of Class A Service in Winnipeg, told CBC News that Chris Piper, who has worked for the company for three years, was working with his uncle's crew on a Cambridge Street apartment complex on Wednesday when he fell.
After falling along the side of the Cambridge Gardens building from between the seventh and eighth storeys, Piper went through an atrium window and landed on the floor of the lobby.
He was taken to a Winnipeg hospital in critical condition, but on Thursday afternoon health officials said he is now in stable condition.
The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority issued a statement on behalf of the patient, who is in "good spirits" and thanks everyone for their concern but requested privacy at this time.
St. Godard said he has spoken with Piper's family on Thursday and they are relieved the injured man is in stable condition.
The Winnipeg Police Service and Manitoba Workplace Safety and Health are investigating Wednesday's fall.
Class A Service has had safety violations in the past, and it was forced recently to stop work on a job site, provincial officials told CBC News.
"We have inspected Class A, this company, in the last month or so," Joanne Guerra of the province's workplace safety and health division said Thursday afternoon.
"We did issue a stop-work order, but it was at a different location."
Safety officials have launched a full investigation into Wednesday's fall. Guerra said that investigation could take four months.
Meanwhile, a Steinbach businessman says Manitoba needs to improve its safety regulations for window washers.
Kris Jennings says the window washer's fall on Wednesday is an accident that has been waiting to happen.
"It was only a matter of time for one of these window washers," he said.
Jennings briefly worked for a window washing company in Winnipeg before opening his own company, Axis Coatings.
He says the majority of Winnipeg window washing companies don't give employees enough training to be safe on the job. Most of it is from on-the-job training.
And the focus of most training seems to be about having two anchor points for the ropes. However, the condition of the equipment is overlooked, Jennings said.
His employees are certified with extensive training on how to be safe in high and dangerous places, he said.
"You need to be trained and that means, you know, going into a classroom and doing physical training on ropes, not being trained on the job," he said.
"You need to be in a classroom setting, and in a controlled environment to learn how to do this stuff."