Excerpt from the OH&S Canada magazine

An Alberta company was handed penalties totaling $250,000 more than five years after a worker was crushed between a vehicle and a tree.

Settlement Transportation Services Inc. was fined January 26, 2012 after pleading guilty to failing to take every reasonable precaution for the protection of a worker, contrary to Alberta’s Occupational Health and Safety Act.

On July, 2006, at the Fishing Lake Mètis Settlement, a Caterpillar dozer operator was helping another driver attach two fallen trees to the rear ripper shank of the first vehicle, notes information from the AHS. The worker was crushed between the ripper framework and the tree root ball as the dozer backed up.

Of the creative sentence, $249,000 is pegged for establishing an OH&S management system for the settlement.

My opinion

Alberta health and safety, hmm… it sure does not seem to mean much. Here we find that the actual fine is $1,000 and $249,000 to establish what, a management system? What a crock! There should have been a tailgate meeting onsite for the dozer operator to discuss all possible hazards and how to deal with them.

The only province that completes creative fines like this is Alberta!

I suggest the people of Alberta attempt to drive change with the new NDP government. The workplace safety needs are great in Alberta, and I am hopeful this new government can and will do the right thing.

By the way, as another example, in Alberta, guess who can initiate a work stoppage? Any takers? The supervisor!!! There is a warm thought for workers!

Do you know when there can be a health and safety committee in Alberta? When the government and ordered it! In other words, the province of Alberta is where Ontario used to be prior to 1990, the year when the certification process of health and safety committee representatives to be allowed to initiate work stoppages was initiated.

Let’s face it, in Alberta, the worker has no voice. What a shame! The Alberta Federation of Labour has tried for years to improve workplace conditions and I take my hat off to them for their efforts. It could not have been easy.

Remember – Alberta Health and Safety – An Oxymoron!

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’ 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.