Blog Post #516 – Corporation of the Township of Essa Fined $50,000 after Lack of Machine Guarding, a Worker was Injured

Blog Post #516 – Corporation of the Township of Essa Fined $50,000 after Lack of Machine Guarding, a Worker was Injured

Excerpt from the Ontario government’s ‘Newsroom’

The Corporation of the Township of Essa was fined $50,000 for a violation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act after a worker was injured.

On January 4, 2012, a worker entered a building owned by the township located at 8531 County Road 10, in Angus. The building was not heated. The worker was tasked with changing the attachment on a municipal tractor machine called a Trackless, which would then be used to clear snow. On the rear of the Trackless was a sand spreader attachment with a large top opening. After changing the front attachment the worker started the Trackless and walked around it, checking that it was ready for use. The worker slipped on ice and one arm went in to the sand spreader, where it was caught by rotating augers and trapped, causing injuries.

The Corporation of the Township of Essa pleaded guilty to failing to ensure that the sand spreader was equipped with a guard to prevent access to the rotating augurs.

The fine was imposed by Justice of the Peace Dennis D. White. 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:

The Corporation of the Township of Essa was found guilty of a contravention of section 24 of the Ontario ‘Industrial’ sector regulation 851/90 which states,

“Where a machine has an exposed moving part that may endanger the safety of any worker, the machine shall be equipped with and guarded by a guard or other device that prevents access to the moving part.”

The Corporation of the Township of Essa was also found guilty of a contravention of section 25, subsection 1(c) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) which states,

“An employer shall ensure that,

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

Another machine guarding accident! Why does this continue to happen? Every sector has its own regulation including the following;

1) Construction – 213/91,
2) Industrial – 851/90,
3) Healthcare – 67/93, and
4) Mining – 854/90.

All 4 have a section concerning machine guarding as it was deemed important enough to be included in all of them. I just do not understand why more employers do not read the sections of their particular sector regulation before they ever engage their employees to work.

Enough said!

By the way,

I was wondering in the manufacturer had machine guarding in place and was removed. This must be the case as usually the manufacturer can be found guilty of a design issue if the design fails a section of the law. Therefore, there must have been something there and it was removed.

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 ‘Due Diligence’, ‘Machine Guarding’ and ‘Standard Operating Procedures’. 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 – Advanced Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.

Dan
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1 Comments

  1. Wilma

    I wanted this all along!

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