Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’
On December 11, 2015, a young worker fell from the roof of a house that was being re-shingled. A lanyard was apparently detached from a safety line at the time. The young worker was hospitalized for over six months but did not regain consciousness and passed away.
Workers employed by Dayus Roofing were engaged in the removal of old shingles and the application of new shingles to the roof of a house. One of the workers was collecting old shingles for disposal into a garbage dumpster located at the ground level.
All the workers on the roof that day were supplied with and wearing fall protection equipment consisting of a harness attached via a lanyard to safety lines and anchor points on the roof; all had been trained and tested in use of fall protection.
Investigation determined that the young worker was traversing the roof (a distance of approximately 60 feet) to dispose of materials into the garbage dumpster, and apparently detached the lanyard from the work zone safety line and reattached it to the safety line that traversed the roof.
On one occasion while traversing the roof the young worker did not reattach the lanyard to the safety line. It is believed that on that occasion that the young worker lost footing and fell to the ground below, sustaining severe injuries. The young worker was hospitalized for over six months, never regaining consciousness, and passed away.
Dayus Roofing Inc. pleaded guilty to the offence of failing, as an employer, to ensure that the measures and procedures prescribed by section 26.1(2) of Ontario Regulation 213/91 (the Construction Projects Regulation), were carried out in the workplace. This requires an employer to adequately protect workers with a guardrail system, or with another fall protection method such as a travel restraint system, a fall restricting system or a fall arrest system. This failure was contrary to section 25(1)(c) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA).
Dayus Roofing was fined $90,000 in Provincial Offences Court/Ontario Court of Justice, 251 Goyeau Street, Windsor, by Justice of the Peace Susan E. Whelan; Crown Counsel Shantanu Roy.
The court also imposed a 25-per-cent victim fine surcharge as required by the Provincial Offences Act. The surcharge is credited to a special provincial government fund to assist victims of crime.
The law(s) in contravention,
Dayus Roofing was found guilty of a contravention of the Ontario ‘Construction’ regulation 213/91, section 26.1(2) which states,
“If it is not practicable to install a guardrail system as that subsection requires, a worker shall be adequately protected by the highest ranked method that is practicable from the following ranking of fall protection methods:
- A travel restraint system that meets the requirements;
- A fall restricting system that meets the requirements;
- A fall arrest system, other than a fall restricting system designed for use in wood pole climbing, that meets the requirements; or
- A safety net that meets the requirements.”
Since Dayus Roofing failed to comply with section 26.1(2) of the regulation, then they were also in contravention of the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) section 25, subsection 1(c) which states,
“An employer shall ensure that,
(c) the measures and procedures prescribed are carried out in the workplace.”
The employer MUST ensure compliance. That is the law! Roofers are a breed of workers that would rather not wear the safety equipment. Just ask them! I wonder about the employee that was killed. I wonder if he/she was developing a mind-set because the work culture did not include safety?
HRS Group Inc. has a great team that can help you with all your health and safety needs. (Including Working at Heights)
Contact Deborah toll free at 1-877-907-7744 or locally at 705-749-1259. We can also be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Ensure your workplace is a safe place.
Remember – In Ontario, “ALL Accidents are Preventable”
‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.
Daniel L. Beal
CHSEP – Advanced Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.