Newmarket-Aurora MPP, Frank Klees wants Ornge to get out of the aviation business.
“The gas plant scandal cost taxpayers of this province more than a billion dollars,” Klees said in the legislature today. “The Ornge Air Ambulance scandal cost taxpayers untold millions, but more important, it also cost the lives of patients and when the truth is fully known, we’ll find that the lack of oversight, mismanagement and ineptitude under the watch of this government cost the lives of four dedicated First Responders.”
Klees made the comments when questioning the Minister of Health about the strategic review currently being undertaken by Ornge.
”If there was one common theme throughout the 18 months of hearings into the Ornge scandal, it was that Ornge should not be in the aviation business,” Klees said. “Witness after witness, including present and former staff of Ornge, told us that the organization does not have the competency to manage the aviation side of the service.”
He referred to two Transport Canada Investigation Reports issued in March of this year that contained what Klees called a “scathing indictment” of Ornge. The reports cited numerous deficiencies, many of which were classified as “Critical” non-compliances with Canadian Aviation Regulations.
As a consequence of the inspections, flight operations at some bases were temporarily suspended. Findings included deficiencies in pilot training records, flight crews not having received training in a number of procedures including Emergency Procedures, Aero Medical Resource Management and Controlled Flight into Terrain Avoidance.
Klees called on the Minister of Health to direct Ornge to include the option of divesting its aviation operations in its strategic review, rather than perpetuate what he called the Mazza scheme that will only continue to put front line staff and patients at risk.