Blog Post #1113 – Company Fined $90,000 After Worker Suffers Critical Injuries in Fall from Heights

Blog Post #1113 – Company Fined $90,000 After Worker Suffers Critical Injuries in Fall from Heights

Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’

A worker, employed by GMJ Electric Inc., contracted by Santoro Construction Inc., out of Mississauga, Ontario, fell from a ladder and suffered critical injuries while performing electrical wiring work on a renovated office site.

The company was constructing a new office building and renovating an existing building at 27 Fasken Drive in Toronto.

Santoro Construction Ltd. was the constructor of the project at 27 Fasken Drive and had contracted with GMJ Electric Inc. to carry out all the electrical installations.

The worker and a co-worker were tying in and labelling electrical wiring in the ceiling of a renovated office area. The worker was working on the top third rung of a 10-foot step ladder and reaching into an area above the grid of a drop ceiling. The worker fell from the ladder to the floor, suffering critical injuries.

The defendant, Santoro Construction Inc., failed to provide a worker with the equipment appropriate for situations where work cannot be done on or from the ground without hazard to workers.

A separate trial will be held with the employer GMJ Electric and an individual as the defendants, scheduled to begin in July 2018. (future blog post)

Following a guilty plea, the company was fined $90,000 in Toronto South court by Justice of the Peace Rosanne Giulietti; Crown Counsel Indira Stewart.

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.

My opinion

The law(s) in contravention,

Santoro Construction Inc. was found guilty of a section of the Ontario ‘Construction’ regulation 213/91, section 125, subsection (1) which states,

  1. (1) “Where work cannot be done on or from the ground or from a building or other permanent structure without hazard to workers, a worker shall be provided with a scaffold, a suspended work platform, a boatswain’s chair or a multi-point suspended work platform that meets the requirements of this Regulation.”

This could have been easily rectified if the worker was given access to a push-around elevating work platform as described in “CSA/CAN3-B354.1-M82”, ‘Elevating Rolling Work Platform’ or a small ‘Self-Propelled Elevating Work Platform’ as described in “CSA/CAN3-B354.2-M82” and “CSA/CAN3-B354.3-M82”.

A simple evaluation of the area for access would have eliminated the hazard and possibly protected the worker. Simple, yes! Available, well, it should be. $90,000 and a tarnished safety reputation may help motivate them.

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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