Excerpt from the Government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’

Linamar Holdings Inc., carrying on business as Transgear Manufacturing, a Guelph car part manufacturer, was fined $150,000 for a violation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act after a worker was injured.

On May 20, 2009, a worker at the company’s facility in Guelph was trying to determine the cause of a leak in a machine. The worker opened the cage surrounding the machine and went into the enclosed area. The worker had not been told that the area contained exposed parts that were electrically charged. The worker’s head came into contact with a charged part of the machine, causing electrical shock and burns.

Linamar Holdings Inc., carrying on business as Transgear Manufacturing, was found guilty of failing to provide information about the presence of electrically charged exposed parts in the enclosed area of the machine. The court also found that the company failed to provide information, instruction and supervision to a worker on the safe procedure for dealing with a leak.

The fine was imposed by Justice of the Peace James Ziegler. 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.

My opinion

The law(s) in contravention:

Linimar Holdings Inc. was found guilty of a contravention of section 25, sub-section 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 or safety of the worker.”

There were so many sections, both of the ACT and the Industrial regulations that could have been quoted. Mind you, the fine was in the appropriate price range so good for them. They did get the total right and probably felt that the most underlying reason for the accident could be traced back to this well-used section of the health and safety law. I guess they felt anything else was over-kill. Still, a proper set of SOPs would have saved the day, and yes, proper supervision would have been a nice touch as well.

Remember – In Ontario, “ALL Accidents are Preventable”

HRS Group Inc. has a great team that can help you with all your health and safety needs including ‘Electrical Safety Awareness’, ‘Due Diligence’ and ‘Lockout and Tagout’. 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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