Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s Newsroom’

Cap Concrete Structures Ltd., a Concord-based concrete-forming company, was fined $70,000 for violating the Occupational Health and Safety Act after a worker was injured.

On May 13, 2010, in Toronto, a worker was working from an extension ladder. The worker was wearing fall protection and had attached the lanyard to an “A” frame, which had been set in place by a crane. The frame was not in a fixed position and was supported by one point of contact.

The crane operator then caught the frame in the crane’s chains, causing the frame to rise from its attachment point. The frame then fell, dragging the first worker to the ground below. The frame also fell on top of that worker, causing serious injuries.

A Ministry of Labour investigation found that Cap Concrete Structures Ltd. failed as an employer to ensure that material or equipment at a project shall be stored and moved in a manner that does not endanger the worker.

Cap Concrete Structures Ltd. was fined $70,000 by Justice of the Peace Karin Dresher. 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 crane operator has also been charged under the Occupational Health and Safety Act and that trial is ongoing.

My opinion

The law(s) in contravention:

Cap Concrete Structures Ltd. was also found guilty of violating section 37, sub-section of the Ontario ‘Construction’ sector regulation 213/91 which states,

“Material or equipment at a project shall be stored and moved in a manner that does not endanger a worker.”

Cap Concrete Structures Ltd. was found guilty of violating section 25, sub-section 1(c) of the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) which states,

“An employer shall ensure,

c) The measures and procedures prescribed are carried out in the workplace.”

I wonder if the crane operator received any formal training on the crane. Doesn’t to seem to have been that way, right? If the crane operator HAD received proper training then the planned lift would have been discussed, reviewed and dealt with in a professional manner prior to the operation ever taking place. Now we know why the trial is still ongoing.

Here we find that the company did not ensure that any regulations that apply to the work were being adhered to (hence the section 25 1(c) violation) Not knowing the regulations or the appropriate section is no excuse either. It is just the price of doing business in Ontario.

Keeping your workforce safe is your first priority. If the company cannot protect their workers then they should not be in business.

Not a positive message to review on Boxing Day but there it is. Someone has to say it!

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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