Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’
Leavoy Rowe Beef Co. Ltd. of Toronto, a company that provides specialty cutting of high-end meat for restaurants and other institutions, has been fined $50,000 for a violation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act after a worker sustained serious injuries resulting in the loss of fingers.
On March 2, 2012, at the company’s meat-cutting plant in Mississauga, a worker was cleaning a conveyor in the company’s meat packing room at 2576 Wharton Glen Avenue. The conveyor was running as the worker was wiping it down and one hand was pulled into the equipment. There was a partial guard covering the conveyor gears but it was not adequate to prevent access to the hazard. The worker lost two fingers. A Ministry of Labour investigation followed.
Leavoy Rowe Beef Co. was fined because they pleaded guilty to failing, as an employer, to ensure that the measures and procedures prescribed by section 25 of Regulation 851 made under the Occupational Health and Safety Act were carried out, and was fined $50,000.
The fines were imposed by Justice of the Peace Gerry Manno. 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,
Leavoy Rowe Beef was found guilty of violating section 25 of the Ontario ‘Industrial’ regulation 851/90 which states,
“An in-running nip hazard or any part of a machine, device or thing that may endanger the safety of any worker shall be equipped with and guarded by a guard or other device that prevents access to the pinch point.”
There also seems to be either a misprint on the MOL website. Leavoy Rowe Beef was also found guilty of section 25, sub-section 1 (c) of the OHSA which states,
“An employer shall ensure that,
(c) the measures and procedures prescribed are carried out in the workplace.”
To think someone could still lose his/her fingers in a machine accident in today’s world. There are so many safety features and protective devices available so why did this have to happen.
By the way, where was the supervisor in this matter? Why was the worker not issued a written set of safe work instructions prior to the operation? Was safety ever discussed? I think not!
My advice to this employer is to read the OHSA, sections 25 and 26 for their responsibilities. They should also read section 27 of the OHSA to further understand the supervisor’s role in all this. Section 28 of the OHSA deals with the worker’s role in the workplace and sub-sections 1 and 2 state,
“A worker shall,
(a) work in compliance with the provisions of this Act and the regulations;
(b) use or wear the equipment, protective devices or clothing that the worker’s employer requires to be used or worn.”
How, in this case, can any worker comply with both sections if he/she were not even given the tools to do his/her job!
Ensure your workforce understands all the hazards of the particular job, assess the possibilities of the chances for injuries, and place controls, whether engineering or administrative in nature, in place to protect the workers.
Nothing else matters!
Remember – In Ontario, “ALL Accidents are Preventable”
‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.
Daniel L. Beal
CHSEP – Advanced Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.