Excerpt from the Government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’

AGF Raymond Rebar Inc., an Ottawa construction company, was fined $110,000 yesterday for violations of the Occupational Health and Safety Act after a worker was injured.

On July 23, 2008, workers were at a tower construction project on Kent St. in Ottawa. They were preparing to hoist two structures made of reinforcing bar, or rebar, with a crane. The rebar structures were sitting one on top of the other. The workers attached the bottom rebar structure to the crane but did not secure the top structure. As the crane lifted both structures, the load shifted and the unsecured structure fell on a worker. The worker suffered multiple fractures and damage to internal organs.

AGF Raymond Rebar Inc. was found guilty of failing to ensure that the crane’s rigging was arranged to prevent the top rebar structure from slipping or falling. The company was fined $80,000 for this offense.

AGF Raymond Rebar Inc. was also found guilty of failing to provide information, instruction and supervision to a worker on preventing a hoisted object from slipping or falling. The company was fined $30,000 for this offense.

The fines were imposed by Justice of the Peace John A. Balkwill. In addition to the fines, 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.

My opinion

The law(s) in contravention:

AGF Raymond Rebar was found guilty of a contravention of section 172, subsection 1(c) of the Ontario ‘Construction’ regulation 213/91 which states,

“A container, sling or other similar device for rigging or hoisting an object, including its fittings and attachments,

c) Shall be so arranged as to prevent the object or other part of the object from slipping or falling.”

AGF Raymond Rebar was also found guilty of a contravention of section 25, subsection 2(a) of the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) which states,

“An employer shall,

a) Provide information, instruction and supervision to a worker to protect the health and safety of the worker.”

Crane training covers the rigging and slinging of the materials. In fact, if the crane was over 8 tons, a hoisting engineer’s record of training is required.

At HRS Group Inc. we have been serving the community by offering pendant crane training and, if the corresponding training of tower and mobile crane is similar, the safe application of slings and rigging is discussed. You see, in Ontario one must be competent to do the work in any number of different fields.

As a review, competency in Ontario can be summed up this way,

1) One must have the training, experience and experience to organize the work
2) One must know the ACT and the corresponding regulations that apply to the training and
3) One must know all the hazards associated with the work.

It sounds to me that the operator and/or the sling operator was not competent and the accident occurred. Maybe AGF Raymond Rebar needs to review the green book for more information.

By the way, the record of training covers 3 years. I once had a company disagree stating that the regulations stipulate that it is up to the employer and the governing body. The easy way to get the right answer was to call the MOL hot line. The MOL has deemed that a ROL (record of training) is required every 36 months.

Check it out!

Remember — In Ontario, “ALL Accidents are Preventable”

HRS Group Inc. has a great team that can help you with all your health and safety need including ‘Material Handling’, ‘Construction Lifting and Rigging’ and ‘Proper Lifting Techniques’. Contact Deborah toll free at 1-877-907-7744 or locally at 705-749-1259.

We can also be reached at info@hrsgroup.com

‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.

Daniel L. Beal
CHSEP – Foundation Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.

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