Excerpt from the Government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’
Triple M Metal Corp., a Brampton company that recycles metal, was fined $150,000 for a violation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act after a worker was killed.
On June 9, 2009, at the company’s Brampton scrap yard, a machine made for shredding metal was shut down for maintenance. The shredder had a dome lid that could be opened for access to its interior. The dome lid was opened using a hydraulic system and secured in place with a pin. After maintenance work on the shredder, one worker removed the pin while a second worker activated the hydraulic controls so that the lid could close. The first worker went away and some time later the second worker was found trapped in the shredder, between the dome lid and base.
A Ministry of Labour investigation found that during the shredder’s maintenance, there were no guards or devices in place to prevent access to the shredder’s pinch point. Additionally, the company did not have a procedure to ensure that the shredder was clear of equipment and workers before its lid was closed.
Triple M Metal Corp. pleaded guilty to failing to ensure that the shredder was equipped with a guard or other device to prevent access to its pinch point.
The fine was imposed by Justice of the Peace Michael Barnes. In addition to the fine, the court 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) broken,
Triple M Metal Corp. was found guilty of violating section 25 of the Ontario ‘Industrial’ regulation 851 which states,
“An in-running nip hazard or any part of a machine that may endanger the safety of any worker shall be equipped with and guarded by a guard or other device that prevents access to0 the pinch point.”
Again we see that a company did not include health and safety into the design stage of the operation. A metal shredder (even the name sounds like trouble) and no procedure written down, followed, and enforced by management. The fine was in line with more of the same type of accident and a death in the workplace due to this type of callous disregard for the worker’s safety is unacceptable.
If you do not want to be painted with the same brush, then consider the safety of your workforce when designing the work operations. It is essential for all of your employees to feel they work in a safe environment.
Remember — In Ontario, “ALL Accidents are Preventable”
‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.
Daniel L. Beal
CHSEP — Foundation Level
VP & Senior Trainer
P.S. If the reader is becoming aware, I have a designation now and it is CHSEP – Foundation level. (certified in health and safety environment processes) It was a long haul but I am now closer to my goal of joining the ranks of the CRSPs. WISH ME LUCK!