Weyburn community mourns for two SaskPower workers killed in industrial accident

A worn-out pair of work boots appeared at the base of a power pole at the corner of Government Road and Sixth Avenue SE in Weyburn, and over the weekend grew into a memorial site in tribute of two SaskPower workers who were killed in an industrial accident at the site on Thursday afternoon. The flag at the SaskPower maintenance centre in Weyburn (shown above) also flew at half-mast out of respect for their fallen co-workers.

Weyburn Police and Weyburn EMS responded to the scene shortly after 3 p.m., and found Scott Bill, 51, had been killed, and Cole Crooks, 40, was badly injured. He was taken to the Weyburn General Hospital and shortly after died of his injuries.

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The Weyburn Police Service is working in conjunction with the Saskatchewan Coroner’s Service and Saskatchewan Occupational Health and Safety as they continue their investigation into this tragic matter.

A gofundme page has been set up for the two men’s families at https://gf.me/u/y4dwmx by Allen Stanicki of Weyburn.

As of Saturday afternoon, the page had raised $24,155 from 217 donors, eclipsing the initial goal of $2,000.

In a statement issued on Saturday, SaskPower president and CEO Mike Marsh said, “It is with profound sadness that we learned of a workplace incident on Thursday that resulted in the deaths of two of our SaskPower employees. Scott Bill and Cole Crooks worked as powerline technicians on the Weyburn construction crew and their work took them to many communities in southern Saskatchewan.

“From the bottom of our hearts, we acknowledge them for their service and dedication to SaskPower and to our customers across the province. This terrible loss of members of our SaskPower family and of the Weyburn community, is deeply felt by us all. 

“On behalf of the entire executive team and Board of Directors at SaskPower, our heartfelt condolences and sincere sympathies go out to their families, friends and to all their co-workers in this difficult time.”

Mayor Marcel Roy extended condolences on behalf of himself and city council to the family and friends of the two workers.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with you, as is the rest of the community,” added Mayor Roy.

He said if any family or friend of the accident victims needs someone to talk to at this time, the services of the chaplains for the Weyburn Police Service and Weyburn Fire Department, Tim MacKinnon and Jodi Pfeifer, are available by contacting either office.

The incumbent MLA for Weyburn-Big Muddy, Dustin Duncan, who is also the Minister Responsible for SaskPower, suspended his election campaign for the day on Friday out of respect for the two fallen workers, and issued the following statement.

“In my capacity as Minister Responsible for SaskPower, I was notified of a serious safety incident in Weyburn which resulted in the death of two SaskPower employees. These will be difficult days for so many people. My thoughts and prayers are with their families and friends, as well as the entire community of Weyburn.

“My heart also goes out to the entire SaskPower family. I offer my condolences to each of them, especially the powerline technicians. I know this is a tight knit group of employees throughout the province, and they are grieving the loss of two colleagues,” said Duncan.