The Ontario SPCA is still investigating the aftermath of a transport truck crash near a local slaughterhouse that led to 42 dead pigs in October.
But Canadian Food Inspection Agency didn’t launch a formal probe after the Oct. 5 crash outside Fearman’s Port Inc., at Appleby Line and Harvester Road.
Of 180 pigs on the truck, 42 either died from injuries or were euthanized under the federal agency’s observation, a spokesperson said in a recent email to The Spectator.
The other pigs were inspected and “released for production,” Tammy Jarbeau said.
“The CFIA determined that no inhumane transport violations occurred and, therefore, a formal investigation was not warranted,” she added.
The rollover crash gained international attention from animal rights advocates already attuned to the case of Anita Krajnc, who was on trial for giving water to pigs destined for slaughter at Fearmans.
The Toronto Pig Save activist has pleaded not guilty to a mischief charge but acknowledged she gave water to pigs in a truck trailer on a hot day in June 2015.
Krajnc’s trial resumes in March.
After the October crash, the SPCA responded to reports about how the pigs were treated after they were unloaded from the truck.
Witnesses described disgust at seeing pigs suffering for hours in the sun without medical attention.
Some advocates implored Fearmans to release injured pigs into their care for rehabilitation rather than euthanize them.
Sofina Foods Inc., which owns Fearmans, said some hogs “were seriously compromised and could not be saved.”
“In all cases, all proper and regulatory procedures were followed in collaboration with the authorities,” spokespersons said.
At the time, the SPCA said it expected to have a firmer grasp of how the pigs were handled in “a few weeks.”
But just before Christmas, a spokesperson for the provincial agency noted it’s still reviewing evidence, some of which is on video, to make sure its probe is thorough.
“As our investigation has unfolded, more information has been presented to us, which takes time to review,” spokesperson Melissa Kosowan said in an email.
Anna Pippus, lawyer for Animal Justice, says the SPCA investigation is taking “far too long.”
Animal protection laws serve to deter dog and cat cruelty, but not farmed animals, Pippus added.
“Even when they endure a tragic accident in front of dozens of witnesses, there is no accountability. Our animal protection system is broken and needs to be overhauled. When it comes to how we treat animals, especially farmed animals, we are living in the Dark Ages.”
After the crash, Halton police charged a 25-year-old man from Brunner, Ont., with careless driving.
Source: The Hamilton Spectator