Monthly Archives: November 2018

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Quebec City fire report doesn’t explain why family had to jump four storeys: lawyer

QUEBEC CITY – When the ladder on a Quebec City fire truck broke during a fire in January, a family of three was forced to jump four storeys to escape death.

Since the incident, the family’s lawyer, Dominique Bertrand, has been asking why firefighters didn’t do more to try and rescue them.

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  • Family forced to jump four storeys from Quebec City fire questions truck safety

  • Quebec City fire victims sue after being forced to jump four floors to safety

  • Quebec City apartment fire victims want answers from fire department

    READ MORE: Family forced to jump four storeys from Quebec City fire questions truck safety

    She insists a recent fire report on what happened that night provides few answers.

    Nathalie Chicoine broke 50 bones in her body when she, her 10-year-old son and her partner were forced to jump from their burning fourth floor apartment.

    She is likely to live the rest of her life in chronic pain, explained Bertrand.

    “They were screaming ‘we are suffocating, please help us. We are dying, please, please.’ So, you can understand the panic and no firemen were telling them to calm down,” Bertrand said.

    The lawyer received a copy of the report, which was commissioned by the Quebec City fire department.

    READ MORE: Quebec City fire victims sue after being forced to jump four floors to safety

    Bertrand told Global News she’s shocked by how few details it contained, claiming the investigator didn’t speak to her clients.

    WATCH BELOW: Family jumps from fourth storey

    Quebec City family jumps out of burning building


    Quebec City family jumps out of burning building


    Quebec City family who jumped from burning building hires lawyer


    Family questions firetruck safety


    Quebec City fire victims sue

    Bertrand said she also has concerns about what firefighters said happened after the truck ladder broke.

    “They said in their report that there was a Plan B to go and get a ladder with something to hook onto the window, but the ladder wasn’t in the truck,” she explained, adding the second ladder was still at the fire station.

    “So during this time, the people were still stuck in the fire, you understand? So, it doesn’t work for me. It doesn’t work. There was no Plan B.”

    The Quebec City fire department told Global News it wouldn’t discuss the case or the report, citing an ongoing lawsuit.

    READ MORE: Quebec City apartment fire victims want answers from fire department

    Bertrand is waiting to hear from the city to discuss a settlement and said the family is ready to sue.

Starwood begins managing hotel run by military in Cuba

HAVANA – American hospitality giant Starwood began managing a hotel owned by the Cuban military on Tuesday, opening one of the biggest holes in the U.S. trade embargo on Cuba since Presidents Barack Obama and Raul Castro declared detente in Dec. 2014.

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  • Cubans hopeful as gov’t eases rules on private business ownership

  • President Castro says Cuba won’t return to Organization of American States

    The facade of the 186-room Quinta Avenida hotel in Havana’s upscale Miramar neighbourhood has been emblazoned with the logo of Starwood’s Four Points by Sheraton business travel brand and travellers can now book rooms through Starwood’s website.

    The Obama administration permitted the deal with a special Treasury Department license and Starwood announced it on the eve of President Obama’s March visit to Cuba. The stated intention of Obama’s normalization of relations with Cuba is creating more freedom for ordinary Cubans to operate independently of their single-party government, which maintains control of the most aspects of the centrally planned economy.

    READ MORE: 6 of Cuba’s top Airbnbs under $100 now open to travellers everywhere

    Allowing a high-profile U.S. corporation to work hand-in-hand with the Cuban military shows both the Obama and Castro governments’ eagerness to build as many economic ties as possible before the president leaves office, said Robert Muse, a Washington-based expert on U.S. law on Cuba.

    “It certainly goes further and faster than anyone contemplated,” Muse said.

    “The Cuban government proved that it can quickly and decisively deal with the U.S. hospitality sector. No reason they can’t do it again and again and again.”

    The hotel is being gradually refurbished and equipped with new beds, linens and other amenities. The 180-member Cuban staff has been re-trained by a team of 15-20 Starwood managers from other countries over the last few weeks and will be permanently supervised by about five Starwood managers under the terms of the contract.

    Starwood officials said they were investing millions in the rehabilitation of the hotel. They declined to provide a more specific figure.

    Visitors to Cuba frequently and bitterly complain about the poor quality of the infrastructure and service in government-run hotels, and online reviews of the pre-Starwood Quinta Avenida offered a sampling of the challenges the company faces.

    Though interspersed with some praise, comments ranged from “hallways with dirty carpets full of dust and a wet smell” to “crickets and cockroaches in some parts of the hotels show that they weren’t cleaning much.”

    A Gaviota representative declined to comment Tuesday but Pablo Casal, the hotel’s general manager, said he was pleased with the quality of the hotel staff.

    “What we’re finding is a willingness to understand what we expect and apply it,” he said. “We’re working very hard, above all, to provide the service that our guests expect.”

    In the midst of a boom in tourism to Cuba, the hotel is running at about 80 per cent occupancy. Casal said he hoped to complete the renovation by the end of the year. In the meantime, reservations will come with a disclaimer that the hotel is undergoing rehabilitation.

Hundreds of bears killed due to conflicts with people, says province

KELOWNA 鈥?The growing conflict between people and wildlife is sparking an urgent plea from Okanagan conservationists.

A young bear had to be euthanized this weekend after spending the past few weeks eating household garbage in Kelowna neighbourhoods.

READ MORE:聽Bear in Kelowna falls 40 feet from tree after being tranquilized; later euthanized

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鈥淭heir sense of smell is 2,100 times better than ours. They鈥檙e trying to put on 20,000 calories a day so when they get into garbage and fruit trees and non-natural attractants, they get addicted to it,鈥?said conservation officer Ken Owens.

The province says every year hundreds, and in some cases more than a thousand, bears are destroyed as a result of conflicts with people.

Most of the time, the issue arises when there is easy access to non-natural food sources like garbage.

鈥淚t鈥檚 mainly garbage, bird seed, fruit trees, we really want people to ensure bears don鈥檛 have access to them,鈥?said Owens.

He says one way to do that is to become a 鈥楤ear Smart鈥?community, a status currently attained by only seven B.C. communities.

鈥淭hey embrace the root causes of bear and human conflict and they look for those long-term solutions so we are really hoping that more of our communities will come on board with the bear smart community program,鈥?said Owens.

It鈥檚 not just about ensuring bears don鈥檛 find food where they shouldn鈥檛. Conservationists are also urging people not to intentionally feed or get close to any wildlife.

READ MORE: Don鈥檛 feed wildlife, plead Okanagan conservationists

鈥淲e have motor vehicle accidents with deer, we have more encounters where people get hurt, dogs get hurt, so it鈥檚 just not good practice to feed any wildlife at any time, let鈥檚 just keep them wild and let鈥檚 just co-exist with them,鈥?said Owens.

The only Okanagan community with 鈥楤ear Smart鈥?status is Naramata.

Click here to view the Wild Smart website and more tips on how to prevent bears from entering your neighbourhood or yard.

Calgary prepares for visitors as direct flights from Beijing begin

The first non-stop flights between Calgary and China will start this Thursday and Calgary companies are getting ready to cash in.

The new direct flight from Beijing to Calgary will cater to the growing demand from Chinese visitors.

Hainan Airlines will offer the flight three times a week starting June 30.

“It’s about the ease of being able to directly fly to a destination,” Cindy Ady, with Tourism Calgary, said.

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“That is a whole different marketing exercise rather than have them land somewhere else and then entice them to come to your destination.”

Tourism Calgary and Travel Alberta are providing seminars and training programs to help local restaurants and hotels dealing with the expected increase in travellers.

“My message is: ‘get China Ready.’ They’re coming and we are welcoming them as guests and we want to make sure that Calgary is ready,” Ady said.

“Because basically you need to have some understanding of their culture and how they think and what they want to recreate while they are your guest. So we have been working really hard with our partners here in Calgary to be ready. What do they enjoy doing? One, they love to shop. They love things like cultural experiences like Heritage Park and they like to go to the mountains to say they have been in the Rocky Mountains.”

READ MORE: Hainan Airlines to launch Calgary-Beijing route on June 30 

Over at the Westin Hotel staff are taking Chinese cultural training and have been for years now. The hotel’s general manager worked in Beijing for eight years and knows the importance of small touches like providing slippers, menus in Mandarin, and serving Congee for breakfast.

“We knew that the Chinese customer was going to travel the world. We have already been one step ahead by having a detailed PowerPoint presentation of the do’s and don’ts, what to do and what not to do for already about seven years,” Arjun Channa, general manager of the Westin Hotel in downtown Calgary, said.

Up to 70 per cent of the travellers coming to Calgary on the new flights are expected to be tourists, while most of the remainder will likely be business travellers, which Channa says couldn’t come at a better time.

“I think Calgary has a great opportunity. I think this is probably the best time ever for it to diversify and that means new markets.”

The new Hainan Airlines non-stop flights have the capacity to bring in an extra 37,000 Chinese travellers to Alberta in the first year. This is the company’s second Canadian route and its first from Western Canada.

Some Ontario physicians put time limit on patient visits to highlight government cuts

Ontario doctors are sending an abrupt message to their patients about cuts to healthcare services and funding by the provincial government.

At some offices, signs are posted indicating patient visits can only last 15 minutes —; so patients are asked to keep their questions and concerns down to one or two issues.

The signs are not meant to deter patients from visiting their doctor, but instead are meant to send a strong message about Ontario’s healthcare system.

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READ MORE: 500 doctors billed Ontario’s health insurance plan $1M each; one billed ‘staggering’ $6.6M

Dr. Douglas Mark, the interim President of DoctorsOntario, told Global News the time limit is a simple tactic to illustrate the time crunch doctors are faced with due to ongoing healthcare cuts.

“The government is rationing healthcare. We have half the hospital beds we need. We need 50 per cent more doctors right now,” he said.

“There are people waiting everywhere for access to emergency departments and specialists —; so doctors are doing this as a form of survival.”

Since March 2014, Ontario doctors have been without a deal with the province. They say the doctors are becoming a dying breed, with many retiring and others shutting down their practices because they can no longer afford it.

A note on a physician’s door in Toronto recommends patients only see their doctors for 15 minutes and limit their questions to two issues or less.

Angie Seth/Global News

“Doctors do have overheads and patients don’t remember this and therefore are paid a certain amount to see a patient and the overhead costs more than actually seeing the patient and how can that be a worthwhile profession to stay in?” Mark said. 

“The government really likes to dump on us and treat us like dirt, but I think our patients should treat us like gold. We are tired, we are suffering 80 per cent burnout and that is the reality. And the younger doctors have a huge debt load now. $150,000 debt load is not uncommon, plus the overhead, plus trying to make a living.”

But the Ontario Liberals say they are committed to keeping the province healthy and rather than making cuts, they are making significant advances in providing quicker and better accessibility to healthcare for everyone.

READ MORE: Doctor claims fee cuts may push physicians out of Ontario

“The reality is that, thanks to our investments, there are more doctors and nurses practicing in Ontario than ever before and growing at a rate that exceeds population growth,” Health Minister Eric Hoskins said in a statement to Global News.

“We’re committed to building on those investments. There is no limit set by OHIP on the number of medical issues that may be dealt with during a patient’s visit to a physician or the time allotted for each visit. There are no limits to the number of patients a physician can see and physicians will be compensated for every service they provide.”

READ MORE: Ontario government complains about ‘out of control’ doctors’ billings

But Hoskins said individual physicians determine their own office policies, while the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (CPSO) is responsible for governing the practice of medicine.

Groups like DoctorsOntario say they are ready to hash out a deal with the province, however with MPPs on summer hiatus, those discussions won’t be happening at least until the fall.

7 habits to help you get fit this summer

Bathing suit season is upon us – which means it’s time to begin taking your fitness routine seriously.

General Manager at Fitness Connection, Mike Mak, stresses the importance of taking care of yourself and being realistic with what we can achieve over the summer months. He often has clients who dedicate all of their time to getting in the best summer shape, then neglect their fitness regime and end up failing to achieve the fitness level they want.

Naturopathic doctor Carol Morley adds it’s important to feed and nurture yourself properly when trying to achieve a toned body.

“If people are embarking on anything new, I usually suggest they try and do some good baseline stuff and [take] a quick look at dietary [nutrition].”

She said many of her clients complain of low energy levels, so she suggests people have their iron and protein levels checked before embarking on an exercise regime.

READ MORE: Breaking down the top fitness trends for 2016

Mak and Morley offer these tips for those looking to follow a fit and healthy lifestyle this summer.

1. Set realistic goals

“I see people often have high expectations, and [they’re] often unrealistic,” Mak said. Make sure to set goals that are both short- and long-term. It’s great if you want to lose 20 pounds in two months, but is that realistic according to your schedule?

2. Get into a routine

In addition to scheduling your workout, you must plan your meals and sleep. “You want to make sure you are trying to eat at the same time every day, and also sleep at more or less the same time, making sure you get that seven to eight hours to make sure that your body is fully restored,” Mak said.

Morley agrees and warns the summer is a popular time of year to fall off track. “On the weekends, people are out and about a little more, so make sure [you] try to stick to a routine as much as possible.”

3. Prep your meals

People rush out of a workout hungry and grab a bite of whatever is convenient — and that may not necessarily be healthy. In order to avoid temptation, prepare your meals ahead of time. Mak dedicates Sundays for his meal preparation. “I cook all my meat, I make a big pot of quinoa or pasta, and I sort everything,” he said. “Then I put it into containers and have it in the fridge and it’s ready to go.”

4. Have a balanced diet

It can be impossible to eat healthy all of the time, so rather than drive yourself crazy about it, get in the habit of having a balanced diet. It’s OK to indulge once in a while at a barbecue or have a beer on a patio, but it’s important to limit yourself.

“You want to cheat, but you don’t want to de-rail yourself,” said Mak, adding it’s a good idea to give yourself a break once a week. “You want to allow yourself to eat what you want to keep your sanity.”

READ MORE: Fitbit report reveals Canadians’ exercise habits and top workouts

5. Enjoy what you do

Make sure you enjoy the workouts you do. Trends like yoga, Zumba and crossfit might work for a little while, but if you don’t like what you’re doing, the routine’s not going to last very long. Mak compares working out to your job. “If you don’t like going to work every morning, you won’t stay there very long!”

6. Stay hydrated

If you often take your workouts outside, Morley said it’s important to drink water. Your body requires more water while it’s in the sun, so keep a bottle of water close by. You want to help your muscles work and avoid getting any life-threatening illnesses such as heat stroke.

7. Sun safety

Soaking in the sun while exercising outdoors is always fun, but you must protect yourself. The Canadian Cancer Care society has released new sun safety guidelines that say Canadians must be extra careful in the sun from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. In addition, SPF 30 is now the minimum protection you should be using.

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16X9 cancelled, Liza Fromer contract not renewed amid changes at Global News

The award-winning investigative news program 16X9 has not been renewed for another season, Global News announced Tuesday.

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The program has won and been nominated for dozens of prestigious awards since its debut in 2008. That long list includes dozens of RTDNA awards, a Bronze World Medal at the 2015 New York Festivals awards, and the prestigious Beyond Borders award among countless others.

One of those nominations was for 16X9 groundbreaking investigation into the RCMP’s readiness to deal with active shooter investigations.  16X9’s explosive investigation Under Fire explored the Moncton RCMP shootings and whether officers were ready for the call.

The RCMP pleaded not guilty to four Labour Code charges stemming from the June 2014 shooting rampage last month.  The charges followed an investigation into whether the Mounties had the proper equipment and training to deal with active shooter situations.

16X9 also explored the world of dementia and how every hour approximately 900 people are diagnosed with the disease.

“Over its eight seasons, 16X9, broke ground editorially and visually – winning countless awards and international recognition,” Troy Reeb, the senior vice president of News, Radio and Station Operations for Corus Entertainment said.

Reeb described the cancellation of the show as “difficult.”

“The program, and its team, has made lasting contributions to the field of investigative journalism, and we are committed to continuing to invest in this area by establishing a new, network investigations unit to work with local teams across all platforms, including radio,” Reeb said.

The new multi-platform unit will focus on original, enterprise investigations. It will be closely integrated with the network’s flagship newscast, Global National with Dawna Friesen, as well as local newscasts, Globalnews长沙夜网 and Corus radio stations.

Carolyn Jarvis, the current host of 16X9, will join the new team as its Chief Investigative Correspondent. Jarvis is currently on maternity leave.

Liza Fromer’s The Morning Show contract won’t be renewed

Global News also announced that The Morning Show host Liza Fromer’s contract would not be renewed after it expires at the end of June.  Fromer was a key figure on The Morning Show since its inception in 2011 and her role, along with a number of others across the Global News network, has been impacted as a result of the changing and highly competitive media landscape in Canada.

Global News was a part of , which was acquired by Corus Entertainment in January in a $2.65 billion deal. The combined company oversees 45 specialty television channels, 15 local television stations, 39 radio stations, and a host of digital properties including Globalnews长沙夜网.

Saskatoon police launch #GetMyBikeBack campaign

Bike thefts continue to be a problem in Saskatoon and police are hoping a new campaign, #GetMyBikeBack, will help investigators return stolen bicycles to their owners.

So far in 2016, 290 bikes have been reported stolen and often end up for sale on the internet.

READ MORE: Busy weekend for Saskatoon police with almost 1,000 calls

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  • Employee ordered to lie on floor during armed robbery at Saskatoon business

  • Shellbrook, Sask. RCMP looking for woman involved in 3-vehicle crash

  • Police seek victim following sexual assaults in downtown Saskatoon

    In a recent case, a $2,500 bike was stolen from a detached garage. The owner did not have the serial number. Luckily, police were able to find out the serial number through other ways and recovered the bike, in this case a pawn shop.

    Police say their investigations are difficult without identifying serial numbers.

    READ MORE: Prince Albert Fire Department lifts minivan off trapped senior

    The idea behind #GetMyBikeBack is to have bike owners take a picture of the serial number for future reference.

    “These days, everyone has their phone either on them or within reach so we’re encouraging people to snap a quick photo of the bike’s serial number,” said Insp. Patrick Nogier.

    “It’s an easy and convenient way to keep a record so that in the event your bike is stolen, the serial number is easily accessible to provide to police.”

    Police are also working with local businesses to encourage people buying a bike to take a picture of the serial number before leaving the store with their purchase.

    Any bikes that are recovered by police but go unclaimed are put up for auction. In 2015, over 550 bicycles went to auction.

Whiteshell flooding: Aerial look of road and yard washouts near Caddy Lake

A sandbagging machine has arrived at Caddy Lake, as the province continues voluntary evacuations for the Whiteshell after heavy rain caused road washouts over the weekend.

The storm dumped 136 millimetres of rain on the area Friday evening, according to a report from a forestry station in West Hawk Lake.

READ MORE: Whiteshell region flooding washes out roads, cuts off cottagers from properties

On Tuesday the province tweeted out that sandbags are now available for residents at the Caddy Lake boat launch.

Global’s SkyView 1 captured the flooding around Caddy Lake on Tuesday, showing submerged docks and extensive damage to yards and roads.

WATCH: Road near Caddy Lake completely submerged

On Monday, the province said a number of regional roads in the Whiteshell are still flooded or damaged.

Highway 312 from Highway 44 to the Ontario border remains closed.Temporary repairs have been made to the Falcon Lake South Shore Road, allowing for single-lane traffic to pass.

  • Highway 307 in north Whiteshell is washed out near the train tracks between Brereton Lake and Rennie, with motorists advised to travel via Seven Sisters.Other roads in the south Whiteshell area have also been affected and could deteriorate quickly. The province reminds motorists to drive with caution.Caddy Lake tunnels are closed.

    The province also said high water levels are affecting boathouses and docks, as well as two cottages on Caddy Lake.

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      Voluntary evacuation still in effect for Whiteshell area

    • Kenora declares state of emergency

  • Canada Day events in Calgary on July 1, 2016 – and where to watch fireworks

    CALGARY – There are plenty of ways to celebrate Canada Day in Calgary this year.

    Here’s a look at some of the events:

    Prince’s Island Park

    Aboriginal Showcase and Powwow
    10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
    Explore a proud part of Canada’s heritage at a traditional Powwow presented by Bow Valley College’s Iniikokaan Aboriginal Centre.Canadian Military
    10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
    Learn more about our Canadian Armed Forces and Canada’s military history.Recreation – Get Active
    12 p.m. – 6 p.m.
    Join the movement! Located across the bridge from Eau Claire Market, Calgary Recreation is offering a variety of active programming for children an d adults.

    Fort Calgary

    Canada Day at Fort Calgary
    9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
    Celebrate Canada Day in the birthplace of Calgary. Fort Calgary will host a free pancake breakfast, live music and entertainment, children’s crafts and a petting zoo.Living Flag
    12 p.m. – 1 p.m.
    A group of people gather together in red and white tshirts to form a living flag. All participants are asked to wear red or white – but the first 1,000 people to check-in will receive a free red or white shirt.

    Heritage Park 

    Canada Day at Heritage Park
    9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.
    Celebrate Canada Day the old fashioned way, with a blast from the past at Heritage Park. There’s even a free pancake breakfast for the first 2,016 guests before 10:30 a.m.

    Riverfront Avenue

    Riverfront Festivities
    12 p.m. – 11 p.m.
    Riverfront Avenue will be host to a series of family-friendly activities during the day, along with interactive booths and food trucks. Then at 7 p.m., Mayor Naheed Nenshi starts the official Canada Day ceremonies. Evening entertainment includes Joel Plaskett Emergency, The Zolas and The Grapes of Wrath.

    Olympic Plaza

    Olympic Plaza festivities
    10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
    Enjoy this historic downtown park by touring a market, making crafts, learning some history or visiting a popular food truck all while taking in busker and stage performances.

    Stephen Avenue 

    Stephen Avenue festivities
    11 a.m. – 8 p.m.
    Stephen Avenue will feature its usual assortment of shops, restaurants, patios, street vendors and buskers. In addition, the pedestrian walk will feature a full day of entertainment including live music on the #IAMDOWNTOWN stage.

    Eau Claire Market 

    Eau Claire Market celebrations
    11 a.m. – 9 p.m.
    Experience indoor and outdoor entertainment including jugglers, live music, food trucks and children’s activities


    Canada Day in Chinatown
    9 a.m. – 11 p.m.
    Enjoy cultural performances and family-friendly activities, or visit some of the many stores and indulge your taste buds with culinary delights.

    East Village Street Fair, Show & Shine and 5th Street Square 

    Canada Day in the East Village
    9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
    Enjoy all kinds of family fun at the East Village Street Fair, including crafts and artisan vendors, children’s activities and local performances. Bring the family for a classic car show, the Show & Shine, which features imports and North American beauties.

    Studio Bell

    Canada Day at Studio Bell
    10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
    Celebrate the official opening of Studio Bell, home of the National Music Centre.

    Calgary Polo Club

    Canada Day polo matches
    The Calgary Polo Club will be celebrating Canada Day with a series of polo matches. Admission is free. First game begins at 10:30 a.m.


    Centre Street Bridge – 11 p.m.

    The 2016 Canada Day Fireworks will hit the horizon at 11 p.m. The show is synchronized to live music broadcast on 101.5 Kool FM and Wild 95.3 FM. For the best views of the fireworks, visit Sien Lok Park or Crescent Road N.W.

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