Vancouver Airport Authority President and CEO Comments on Events of October 14, 2007



    RICHMOND, BC, Nov. 2 /CNW/ - On October 14, Robert Dziekanski died at our
airport. At this point, the circumstances and factors that may have
contributed to this event are not all clear; what is clear is that a terrible
tragedy occurred.
    I extend my heartfelt condolences to Mr. Dziekanski's family, knowing
that I could not hope to speak to the loss that they have suffered.
    I would also like to express my concerns for those people who were in any
way touched by this extraordinary and tragic occurrence - our employees
working that night, the various agencies involved, the emergency responders
and the passengers who may have come across the scene.
    We all want to understand the events leading up to the death of
Mr. Dziekanski. Since this occurred, it has become clear that the answer to
"What happened here?" is not simple. This is a tragic event unlike any we've
seen before at YVR, involving several agencies and a complex and extraordinary
set of circumstances.
    Our usual policy in situations involving medical issues, up to and
including fatalities, is to respect the privacy of the individuals involved.
We believe this is the most respectful and appropriate approach to take in
this case, and that the best way for the family to receive information about
this tragedy is through the Coroner.
    Our highest priority has been to be completely transparent with the
Coroner and to assist with the investigation by providing all available
information. We have cooperated fully with every request for information made
by the investigating parties.
    We understand that the public is appropriately anxious for information
and we are here today to explain the actions we are taking.
    Immediately following this incident we began an internal review. As part
of that review, we are speaking with employees; we are evaluating our security
procedures and protocols; we are looking at how we provide translation
services; we are examining how we respond to medical emergencies in the
terminals; and we are revisiting our methods for communicating with Canada
Border Services Agency, which has the difficult task of protecting the
security and integrity of our border and the Customs Hall at Vancouver
International Airport.
    Our review is not complete. Based on our review to date, we are confident
that our current procedures meet the safety and security needs of our
customers. We realize that this is an isolated and highly unusual set of
circumstances. We understand that you have many questions.
    We may not be able to provide you with answers to all of those questions.
Please understand that there are a number of organizations and agencies that
work at the airport that have special and exclusive responsibilities. Only the
Coroner has access to all of the related information and can provide an
accurate picture of exactly what occurred.
    We are eager to know the facts; we appreciate your understanding and your
patience while this important and independent Coroner's investigation is
underway.

    - Larry Berg, President and CEO, Vancouver Airport Authority





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For further information: For interviews, contact YVR media relations,
(604) 880-9815, media_relations@yvr.ca

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VANCOUVER INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT AUTHORITY

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