Blog Post #1096 – Conviction for Logging Death

Blog Post #1096 – Conviction for Logging Death

Excerpt from the OH&S Canada magazine

A year and a half after worker was killed in a logging accident north of Lake superior, the Ontario Ministry of Labour (MOL) has fined the employer $80,000.

An MOL news release states that a D&G Logging Ltd. employee was at work near Long Pond Road in the Big Pic Forest, north of Wawa, when the incident took place on January 15, 2018. The employee was working on a Quadco delimiting machine, which is for removing tree branches. The worker was repairing a leak on the hydraulic cylinder on the machine’s boom, which was mounted on a CAT excavator. The boom was suspended, but not blocked, to prevent it from moving as the hydraulic line Was being removed from the cylinder, and the employee was positioned over the machine base and under the boom in order to reach the hydraulic hose from the back of the cylinder.

As a worker was removing the hose, according to the MOL, the pressure with that was holding the boom and the elevated position released suddenly. The boom dropped and crush the worker between itself and the machine. The resulting injuries killed the employee.

The MOL subsequently deemed that the boom had not been blocked or otherwise immobilized to stop it from moving after the machine had been removed from service.

On July 29, 2019 judge Zelda N. Kitchekeesik ordered the employer to pay a fine of $80,000, following a plea of guilty, in the provincial offenses court in Thunder Bay. D&G was also ordered to pay a 25% victim fined surcharge on top of the fine.

D&G is based in Kapuskasing, Ontario which is located near Manitouwadge.

My opinion

The law(s) in contravention

D&G was found guilty of a contravention of the Ontario ‘Industrial Establishments’ regulation 851/90 section 75 which states,

“A part of a machine, transmission machinery, device or thing shall be cleaned, oiled, adjusted, repaired or have maintenance work performed on it only when,

(a) motion that may endanger a worker has stopped; and

(b) any part that has been stopped and that may subsequently move and endanger a worker has been blocked to prevent its movement.”

Because of the contravention of the regulation, D&G was 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.”

There were many questions that needed to be asked;

  1. Was a JHA completed before the work was to be done?
  2. Was the supervisor knowledgeable of all possible hazards?
  3. Was there a checklist for the repair?
  4. Was there more information from the manufacturer on the safe application of their vehicle?

There are many more if you have time but D&G did not have any answers, just questions. Too bad for the employee.

HRS Group Inc. has a great team that can help you with all your health and safety needs. Contact Deborah toll free at 1-877-907-7744 or locally at 705-749-1259.

We can also be reached at info@hrsgroup.com

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.

Dan
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