SHAWINIGAN — The trial of the class action, the Coalition against noise against Bel Air Laurentien aviation on the damages suffered by the activity of the tourist flights of seaplanes passed on Wednesday an important step. After 23 days of trial, all parties have presented their evidence and hear their witnesses. In order to get an idea of the places, the judge Suzanne Ouellet went to the lake to the Turtle with the seven lawyers involved in this trial.
Once the procedures at the courthouse, Shawinigan finished, the judge Suzanne Ouellet went to visit the airport at the lake of the Turtle and the facilities of Bel Air Laurentien aviation. The magistrate had made the request Tuesday during the trial. After consulting several maps in the course of the trial, she wanted to soak up places to better prepare them to make an informed judgment.
She was accompanied by the registrar of the trial, as well as two lawyers from the Coalition against noise, two lawyers of Bel Air Laurentien aviation, the two lawyers representatives of Transport Canada and the lawyer of the attorney general of Quebec. All these women of law have left the robes at the palace of justice to accompany the judge on his visit.
Even if it was outside the walls of the palace of justice, this visit has been made in the rules of the part Of the lawyers recorded the questions asked by the judge as well as the answers. Everything had to be recorded in the minutes. The three people who responded to questions, Alfred St-Onge and Danielle Mongrain of Bel Air Laurentien aviation as Liliane Guay, the president of the Coalition against noise, have all been sworn in Wednesday before the tour.
The two owners of the Bel Air Laurentian aviation, Alfred St-Onge and Danielle Mongrain, accompanied the judge Ouellet wherever it wished to go. After having visited the airport restaurant now closed, the procession made it to the docks, float planes, before continuing with the visit of the hangars, repair workshops, mechanics and the interpretation centre on the history of aviation in the bush.
Justice Suzanne Ouellet was even able to have access to the three seaplanes of Bel Air Laurentien aviation. All the devices were at the dock. She was then able to get an idea of the seaplanes used by the company, including several testimonies reported during the trial. A seaplane, which does not belong to Bel Air Laurentian aviation, even amerri when the judge was on the spot.
Subsequently, the judge made the tour of the lake to the Turtle to see the places of residence of some people who say they are bothered by the noise of tourist flights by seaplane.
Although it is not an exceptional measure in this type of litigation, a field visit of a judge and all lawyers is not something very common.
Return of the debate on the sound level meters
The lawyers of the Coalition against noise have called to the witness stand Wednesday, Bruno Paillard, a former professor at the University of Sherbrooke in electrical engineering now at the head of Convergence instruments. This company specializes in the design and production of sound level meter. She has also designed the sound level meter Noise Sentry, the aircraft used by the Coalition against noise to take its measurements.
When the firm Vinacoustik has taken sound measures in 2016, it is a model of Noise Sentry that has been used. However, Jacques Savard, deputy director, acoustics and vibrations at SNC-Lavalin, had qualified the equipment used by Vinacoustik of “sound level meters toys”. He said that the Noise Sentry can’t make the data very accurate, and its users should take this into account.
In his testimony, Bruno Paillard has indicated otherwise. He has great length to explain the tests that are done on the sound level meters to ensure their proper functioning.
“The stability of the micro [of this device] in the time is remarkable,” he said, stating that this is the case even if the sound level meter is used in the winter.
The only flaw of the Noise Sentry, however, would be the vulnerability of the microphone when there is infiltration of dust.
One of the lawyers of Bel Air Laurentien aviation, Me Myriam Brixit, was asked in cross-examination at Bruno Paillard, the reason for the low cost of sound level meters developed by his company, which can expand to close to $ 500 against several thousands of dollars for most sound level meters are used for professional measurements.
Mr. Lecher stated that the cost of meters from his company uses microphones of cell phones, which can reduce the cost of production.
The trial is scheduled to resume on June 26 with the arguments of the lawyers. Three days are then required for this step.