Blog Post #1189 – Worker Injury Results in $55,000 Fine for Woodbridge Stone Company

Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’

An employee for Best Way Stone Limited received critical injuries after being pushed into a lift table when a conveyor carrying transfer boards loaded with paving stones resumed moving through the production line.

On January 26, 2018, a worker had the task of getting the facility’s HESS line ready for production. The HESS line is used in the manufacture of paving stones. It includes the HESS machine and a de-stacker, which pushes transfer boards carrying the formed paving stones through the line and into the HESS machine.

The worker was operating the HESS line from a control room and noticed that a transfer board had become jammed in the de-stacker.

The worker entered the de-stacker area through a metal screen door and two sliding gates and pushed the stuck board, causing it to move into the HESS machine. At that point the chain drive, which was still operating, moved a stack of 16 backed-up transfer boards from the stack holder into the de-stacker area. The 16 backed-up transfer boards weighed about 1,600 pounds.

The moving stack of boards struck the worker and pushed the worker into a lift table, resulting in critical injuries.

Best Way Stone failed to ensure that the exposed moving parts of the de-stacker and associated chain drives were equipped with and guarded by a guard or other device that prevented access to the moving parts, contrary to section 24. This is an offence pursuant to section 66(1) of the OHSA.

Following a guilty plea, on May 24, 2019Best Way Stone Limited was fined $55,000 by Justice of the Peace Rhonda Shousterman in Newmarket provincial court. Crown Counsel: Judy L. Chan.

The court also 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:

Best Way Stone was found guilty of a contravention of the Ontario ‘Industrial Establishment’ regulation 851/90, section 24 which states,

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

This is a direct contravention of section 25, subsection 1(c) of the Ontario 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.”

As I have been saying, lately, Machine Guarding hazards are becoming the norm and the Ministry of Labour (MOL) needs to ensure that workplaces are completing JHAs for this. (Especially in the ‘Industrial’ world.

HRS Group Inc. has a great team that can help you with all your health and safety needs including ‘Machine Guarding’. Contact Deborah toll free at 1-877-907-7744 or locally at 705-749-1259.

We can also be reached at 

Ensure your workplace is a safe place.

Remember – In Ontario, “ALL Accidents are Preventable”

‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.

Daniel L. Beal

CHSEP – Advanced Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.



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