Blog Post #1212 – Worker’s Critical Injury Results in $70,000 Fine for Cobourg Company

Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’

A worker suffered a critical injury after being caught in operating machinery on February 15, 2018. The worker was employed by Belden Canada Inc. from Cobourg, Ontario, a company that produces and sells connectivity and networking products to a variety of markets, including industrial and broadcasting.

A worker was working on a machine used to process wire. The wire arrives wound around a spool and is then fed from the spool into the machine. Almost immediately upon starting the machine the worker became entangled in several loops of the wire.

The machine had doors and a locking mechanism but no key or tool is required to open this lock; therefore, it is not considered to be a fixed guard. The worker called for help and was helped by co-workers until paramedics arrived.

On Sept. 11, 2019, Following a guilty plea, Belden Canada Inc. was fined $70,000 by Justice of the Peace Joni E. Glover in provincial offences court in Cobourg; Crown Counsel Neil Gobardhan.

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:

Belden Canada was found guilty of a contravention of the Ontario ‘Industrial’ regulation 851/90, section 26 which states,

“A machine shall be shielded or guarded so that the product, material being processed or waste stock will not endanger the safety of any worker.”

Belden Canada Inc. was also found guilty of a contravention of the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) section 25, subsection 1 (c) which states,

“An employer shall ensure that,

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

Machine Guarding, in the ‘Industrial’ sector, is becoming quite a concern. The Ministry of Labour (MOL) has been completing workplace blitzs dealing with Industrial Machine Guarding. In fact, the reader can review many of the past 40 or 50 posts and many of them touch on Machine Guarding Issues.

It would not hurt to have a refresher dealing with Machine Guarding in your workplace.

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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