The Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec initiates new penal proceedings against the Société des traversiers du Québec and four of its employees

MONTREAL, July 15, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - The Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec (OIQ) has initiated proceedings involving eleven new penal charges against the Société des traversiers du Québec and four of its employees for illegally practicing engineering in the work performed on two ships. The OIQ already filed fourteen other charges last month, which brings the total number of charges to 25.

Five of the eleven new charges were filed against the Société des traversiers du Québec and the six others against the government corporation's employees.

The allegations

Between August 2010 and January 2012, the Société des traversiers du Québec is believed to have knowingly encouraged its technicians to carry out work reserved for engineers under the Engineers Act, while René Lebrun, Marc Bélanger and Mathieu Gagnon are said to have prepared plans and specifications and given advice without holding the title of engineer. Gilles Gagné is also said to have knowingly encouraged two technicians who were not members of the OIQ to prepare specifications.

The OIQ has become aware of the alleged offences against the Engineers Act between July 25, 2012 and June 14, 2013.

Two ships are concerned by the allegations: the Isle-Verte-Notre-Dame-des-Sept-Douleurs ferry (Bas-Saint-Laurent region) and the Joseph-Savard ship, which operates between Saint-Joseph-de-la-Rive and L'Isle-aux-Coudres (Charlevoix region).

The fines sought for the various types of offences range from $3,000 to $12,000.

As a reminder, the fourteen charges announced on June 19 concerned similar types of offences to those that the government corporation and four of its other employees allegedly committed.

The OIQ and illegal engineering practice

Illegal engineering practice may have serious consequences on public protection and safety. That is why the OIQ uses different approaches in its attempts to prevent and stop illegal practice.

For example, prevention advisors visit the various enterprises and organizations concerned by the Engineers Act to better inform them about Québec's professional system. Investigators also visit construction sites to make sure that the plans and specifications used are signed and sealed by OIQ members. The OIQ also contacts individuals who have not renewed their registration on the OIQ's membership roll in order to remind them that they are no longer entitled to use the title of engineer or practice the profession. After an inspection, the OIQ may decide to launch penal proceedings against physical or legal persons who have violated the Act.

In 2012-2013, 20 new proceedings involving illegal practice have been launched by the OIQ and 16 judgments have been rendered.

About the Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec

Founded in 1920, the Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec has a membership of more than 60,000 engineering professionals in all fields, except forest engineering. The mission of the OIQ is to ensure the protection of the public by supervising the practice of the profession within the framework of its constituent laws and ensure that the profession serves the public interest. For more information, go to the Web site http://www.oiq.qc.ca.

SOURCE: Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec

For further information:

Patrick Leblanc
Communications and Public Affairs Department
Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec
Tel.: 514 845-5141 or 1 800 461-6141, extension 3253


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