Fraser Health Authority sues telecom firms over Royal Columbian Hospital helipad relocation delays

BIV's lawsuit of the week

Royal Columbian Hospital | New Westminster Record files

The Fraser Health Authority is suing Rogers Communications Inc. and several other telecommunications firms for allegedly causing delays in the relocation of the heliport at Royal Columbian Hospital in connection with a $1 billion revamp of the facility. 

Fraser Health filed a notice of civil claim on December 31, naming TM Mobile Inc. (a Telus entity), Freedom Mobile Inc., Wind Mobile Corp., Globalive Wireless Management Corp., Rogers Communications Inc., Rogers Communication Partnership, Roehampton Communications Ltd. and Trilinks Communications Inc. as defendants.

According to the claim, the health authority had agreements with the telecom firms, which allowed the companies to install equipment on the hospital’s rooftop. The hospital’s helipad accommodates more than 200 flights a year and as part of the hospital’s redevelopment that began in 2016, the helipad was slated to be relocated, requiring defendants to move their equipment. The companies hired defendants Roehampton and Trilinks to undertake the move and agreed to co-ordinate the work with the contractor tapped to move the heliport, the lawsuit says. However, the defendants allegedly failed to complete the work or perform it “in a good, safe and workmanlike manner,” causing delays in the spring of 2017. 

Delays allegedly caused by the companies threatened the heliport’s Transport Canada certification “causing, among other things, unquantifiable costs to human life.” In addition, the project schedule delays cost $86,000 a day and forced Fraser Health to pay for “schedule acceleration.” 

The defendants, the health authority claims, “have wrongfully failed or refused to pay for the damages and losses” resulting from the delays.

The allegations have not been tested or proven in court, and the defendants had not responded to the claim by press time.