How Karen Magnussen's FS Teaching Career was Ruined

Ladskater

~ Figure Skating Is My Passion ~
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Jul 28, 2003
Canada - A gas leak at a North Vancouver ice rink that was reported as a minor incident last November may have put one of Canada's most prominent athletes out of commission for life.

It is sad news, indeed.

All the best to Karen...my skating hero for life.
 
Joined
Aug 16, 2009
This is awful! It's like the injuries people suffered in Bhopal, India, from the industrial plant leak twenty years ago. This is chemical poisoning that no one should be exposed to at a site where young children are regularly present. The eyes and the mucous tissues lining the lungs and esophagus are so delicate. I hope she heals completely, but I'm sure it will take some time.
 

dorispulaski

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That's dreadful.

While Magnussen said she was grateful to the maintenance staff who alerted her to the mishap, she expressed concern that she hadn't heard an alarm, that there was no clearly marked evacuation route, and that the gas had been allowed to escape into the interior of the building, rather than being pushed and kept outside.



Read more: http://www.vancouversun.com/health/...ng+from+leak/5991962/story.html#ixzz1jNAwFOyX

I hope someone will keep after the winter club to put in an alarm that is sensitive to ammonia, similar to the ones used for carbon monoxide.

A google search reveals that several companies sell ammonia leak detection and alarm systems. I don't know which one is the best, but any would be better than none.
 
Joined
Oct 25, 2011
If this happened while she was on the job shen she may be elligible for workman's compensation benefits. Considering she put herself at risk to get everyone else, she desrves a bravery award and compensation for lost revenues.
 

Ladskater

~ Figure Skating Is My Passion ~
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Jul 28, 2003
Wow! Poor Karen. She is still my favorite female skater of all time. I hope she will recover and continue to teach. Karen is an icon of the figure skating world here in Canada. Thanks for sharing this, I did not hear about it. Wishing Karen all the best and a speedy recovery.
 

blue dog

Trixie Schuba's biggest fan!
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Dec 16, 2006
Canada - A gas leak at a North Vancouver ice rink that was reported as a minor incident last November may have put one of Canada's most prominent athletes out of commission for life.

It is sad news, indeed.

All the best to Karen...my skating hero for life.

What happened to Karen, and also what happened to the hockey players here (and to one of the skaters at Adult Nationals this year) is bringing to light that a lot of rinks need to evaluate how to better conduct business so that what happened to Karen, and what happened to these people will either be minimized, or never happen again:

http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/201...on-in-an-unlikely-spot-an-indoor-hockey-arena
 

dorispulaski

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Tribute Show for Former World Champ Karen Magnussen

Magnussen to be honored at B.C. benefit show
Former world champion overwhelmed by support of Vancouver community


http://web.icenetwork.com/news/2015/02/26/110264070

Magnussen suffered disabling lung injuries due to an ammonia leak at her skating rink. She is disabled and unable to work.

Over her working lifetime, Magnussen taught and inspired hundreds of skaters. She has given over three quarters of a million dollars to help young skaters with their expenses through her foundation. However, due to BC law, she cannot sue her employer to compensate her for the unsafe work place and she has been unable to get disability pay from the province so far. She is in a tight spot, both physically and financially.

The skating director of the Connaught Skating Club has put together this tribute show:

Now a coach and skating director at the Connaught Skating Club, Keegan Murphy remembers the support he received from Magnussen's foundation as a young skater and is intent on showing his appreciation as the producer and director of a tribute show in her honor. Karen Magnussen Tribute: A Benefit Show will take place at the Connaught Skating Club in Richmond, British Columbia, on March 14. About 100 skaters will participate, including 2012 Canadian junior champion Mitchell Gordon and 2013 Canadian junior ladies champion Larkyn Austman.
 

anyanka

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Jul 8, 2011
There's a local article on this as well!

http://www.vancitybuzz.com/2015/02/champion-fights-back-karen-magnussen-tribute-show/

FYI Richmond BC is immediately south of Vancouver. You may recall that they held the speed skating events there, and the international airport is located there as well. For those in Seattle, WA, it's a three hour drive due north. Road trip anyone?

And let's send our love and donations to Karen. She was a beautiful champion.
 

peg

Medalist
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Jan 17, 2014
What I don't understand is why she's not getting benefits from Workers' Compensation. The one article even said the rink had failed several health and safety inspections, so you'd think it should be a clear-cut case. She was obviously injured at work, which should be enough to qualify. And the fact that the rink was known to be lax in its safety procedures should just add weight to her claim.

I'm glad about the benefit show. But really, it shouldn't even be needed, and the fact that things have come to this infuriates me.
 

dorispulaski

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The article says in Canada there is a law that you cannot sue your employer for damages to you caused by an unsafe work place. This just seems wrong to me. Is that really what the law is?
 

peg

Medalist
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Jan 17, 2014
I wasn't aware of that law, but we do have Workers' Compensation, so maybe that was meant as a replacement. Basically, companies pay what amounts to an insurance premium, and if workers get injured on the job, then they are entitled to receive benefits through Workers' Compensation (in BC it seems to be called WorkSafeBC - here it's simply called The Workers' Compensation Board). You do have to demonstrate that your injury or illness stems from the workplace, but to me this seems like such a clear-cut case.
 
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