A memorial at the site of the fatal bus crash involving the Humboldt Broncos hockey team stands at the intersection of highways 35 and 335 near Tisdale, Sask., on Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020. Lawyers for the Saskatchewan government are to be in court today to ask that the province be removed from a lawsuit over the crash. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Liam Richards

A memorial at the site of the fatal bus crash involving the Humboldt Broncos hockey team stands at the intersection of highways 35 and 335 near Tisdale, Sask., on Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020. Lawyers for the Saskatchewan government are to be in court today to ask that the province be removed from a lawsuit over the crash. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Liam Richards

Court hears about other claims: Hearing over Broncos lawsuit adjourned

Court heard there are 11 lawsuits in Saskatchewan and Alberta that involve the crash

A judge has delayed a hearing on a lawsuit stemming from the deadly Humboldt Broncos bus crash after lawyers for a proposed class action argued they should be involved.

Sixteen people were killed and 13 others were injured when the driver of a semi-truck blew through a stop sign and into the path of a bus carrying players and staff from the junior hockey team in April 2018.

Lawyers for the Saskatchewan government argued in court Wednesday that, because of the province’s no-fault insurance, it should be struck as a defendant from the lawsuit filed by families of four players and a former assistant coach who died in the crash.

The claim alleges the province failed to act on improving the rural intersection, despite a deadly crash at the same site years earlier. It also names Jaskirat Singh Sidhu, the inexperienced truck driver who caused the crash, and the Calgary-based company that employed him.

Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Donald Layh adjourned the hearing until January, after lawyers with the proposed class action said they weren’t informed of the province’s application until recently.

“I take particular notice of the grief that those parents have gone through and to foreclose their opportunity to speak to or make a decision that affects their rights seems to me … would be a miscarriage of justice,” the judge said.

He said there’s hypersensitivity around the collision and what the Broncos families have experienced. The crash stands as a tragedy for the entire province, he added.

Court heard there are 11 lawsuits in Saskatchewan and Alberta that involve the crash.

Carol and Lyle Brons are listed as representative plaintiffs in the class action, which also names the Saskatchewan government. The couple’s 24-year-old daughter, Dayna Brons of Lake Lenore, Sask., was the team’s athletic therapist and was killed.

The website of Vancouver-based law firm Rice Harbut Elliott LLP says potential members in the class action could also include survivors of the crash, families who billeted hockey players and first responders.

Its lawyers told court Wednesday that a decision about whether the provincial government is struck from the one lawsuit affects other legal actions.

They suggested the issue be heard as part of the class action’s certification process.

Regina lawyer Kevin Mellor represents those involved in the lawsuit that was the subject of Wednesday’s hearing. They are the families of Adam Herold, 16, of Monmartre, Sask.; Jaxon Joseph, 20, of St. Albert, Alta.; Logan Hunter, 18, also of St. Albert; Jacob Leicht, 19, of Humboldt; and Mark Cross, 27, from Strasbourg, Sask.

They do not want to be part of the class action and have been waiting two years for their matter to be heard, Mellor said. Some of the other lawsuits were filed much later, he added.

“Justice delayed is justice denied,” he said outside court.

“My clients are anxious to get this part of their life behind them.”

Mellor said his clients believe the government is responsible for not making sure there were proper sightlines at the rural intersection north of Tisdale, Sask., where the crash happened.

In a statement, Saskatchewan’s Ministry of Highways said a safety review was done following the crash and workers installed rumble strips last fall.

Spokesman Doug Wakabayashi said power lines are to be relocated and trees removed next year.

READ MORE: Truck driver responsible for Humboldt Broncos crash seeks to stay in Canada

Stephanie Taylor, The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Humboldt Broncos

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Island Health chief medical officer Dr. Richard Stanwick receives a first dose of Pfizer vaccine, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
COVID-19: Vancouver Island in a January spike while B.C. cases decrease

Island’s top doc Dr. Stanwick breaks down the Island’s rising numbers

Port Hardy mayor Dennis Dugas. (Dennis Dugas photo)
Port Hardy mayor talks two years in office, ready to move forward in 2021

Port Hardy mayor Dennis Dugas tackles a number of different topics in an interview with the Gazette.

Dex needs surgery after breaking his paw in the panic caused by an apartment fire. (Submitted)
Dog needs surgery after apartment fire injury

A fundraiser has been started to contribute towards veterinarian costs

People skate on a lake in a city park in Montreal, Sunday, January 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
The end of hugs: How COVID-19 has changed daily life a year after Canada’s 1st case

Today marks the one year anniversary of COVID-19 landing in Canada

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Employers might be able to require COVID-19 vaccination from employees: B.C. lawyer

‘An employer must make the case’ using expert science, explains lawyer David Mardiros

Dr. Penny Ballem, a former deputy health minister, discusses her role in leading B.C.’s COVID-19 vaccination program, at the B.C. legislature, Jan. 22, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C. holds steady with 407 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday

14 deaths, no new outbreaks in the health care system

Shown is Quality Foods at 319 Island Highway in Parksville. The Island-based grocery chain announced on Jan. 25 it made a $2-per-hour pay premium, implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic, permanent. (Mandy Moraes photo)
COVID-19: Quality Foods makes $2-per-hour employee pay premium permanent

Island-based grocery chain had extended increase twice in 2020

A Cessna 170 airplane similar to the one pictured above is reported to be missing off the waters between Victoria and Washington State. Twitter photo/USCG
Canadian, American rescue crews searching for missing aircraft in waters near Victoria

The search is centered around the waters northeast of Port Angeles

The North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP have arrested a prolific offender who is now facing more than 40 charges. (Black Press file photo)
‘Priority offender’ arrested in Cowichan Valley faces more than 40 charges

Tyler Elrix, 37, had a history of evading police; was ordered not to be in Vancouver Island

Jonathon Muzychka and Dean Reber are wanted on Canada-wide warrants. (Courtesy of Victoria Police Department)
Convicted killer, robber at large after failing to return to facility: Victoria police

Dean Reber, 60, and Jonathon Muzychka, 43, may be together

B.C. Premier John Horgan listens during a postelection news conference in Vancouver on Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
30% of B.C. recovery benefit applications held up in manual review

The province says 150 staff have been reassigned to help with manually reviewing applications

Adam Dergazarian, bottom center, pays his respect for Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, in front of a mural painted by artist Louie Sloe Palsino, Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Kobe Bryant’s presence remains strong a year after his death

Tuesday marks the grim anniversary of the crash that took their lives

Surrey RCMP are investigating after a pedestrian was struck and killed at 183 Street and Highway 10 Friday night. (File photo)
Modelling of predicted transmission growth from the B117 COVID-19 variant in British Columbia. (Simon Fraser University)
COVID-19 variant predicted to cause ‘unmanageable’ case spike in B.C: report

SFU researchers predict a doubling of COVID-19 cases every two weeks if the variant spreads

Most Read