Worker dies following early March industrial accident at Yellowknife power plant

·2 min read
The Northwest Territories Power Corporation confirmed a worker died following an accident at the power plant at Jackfish Lake in Yellowknife.  (Andrew Pacey/CBC - image credit)
The Northwest Territories Power Corporation confirmed a worker died following an accident at the power plant at Jackfish Lake in Yellowknife. (Andrew Pacey/CBC - image credit)

A worker has died following an industrial accident at the Jackfish power plant in Yellowknife earlier this month.

Michael Paul Chinna was injured in an accident there March 5 and died on Sunday, according to his family.

Doug Prendergast, the communications manager for the power corporation, confirmed the news in a written statement Tuesday.

Prendergast declined to provide details about the incident, saying it was to protect the privacy of Chinna's family and the integrity of an ongoing investigation by the Northwest Territories Workplace Safety and Compensation Commission.

"Michael was an excellent employee who always showed a strong commitment to safety," Prendergast wrote.

"At the time of the accident, he was wearing all of the required personal protective equipment, including a hard hat and safety goggles."

Chinna was an apprentice power systems electrician who'd been with the power corporation since 2018.

The worker's union, UNW Local 16, issued a statement on Tuesday, attributed to union president Todd Parsons.

"We extend our deepest condolences to his family, loved ones, and fellow members as we all grieve together following this terrible tragedy," the statement reads.

The union says it will be participating in the workplace investigation, and is offering its support to the family.

It too declined to comment further on the incident.

On Monday, Chinna's sister Nancy posted about her brother's death on social media. She told CBC he died Sunday.

She described him as a strong young man, who was about to turn 40 and who'd just finished off a power technology degree program. He also called his mother at least once a day, she said.

"There have been so many tears, prayers and much kindness shown this week, throughout the N.W.T., Alberta and Ireland," she wrote. "Thank you to everyone for that."