Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’
A worker employed by Aluminum Window Designs Ltd. of Woodbridge, Ontario, received a critical injury while trying to remove a piece of aluminum from a punch press.
On June 28, 2018, an AWD worker at the 440 Hanlon Road location was using a punch press to cut pieces of aluminum window frame. A piece of aluminum became stuck in the machine.
The worker attempted to remove this jammed piece. While pulling at the part, the top die section of the machine moved downwards. The worker suffered critical injuries.
An inspector from the Ministry of Labour attended at the scene and determined that the punch press was a machine with an exposed moving part that endangered the safety of a worker and was not guarded by a guard or other device that prevented access to the moving part. Specifically, the die section of the punch press was not guarded to prevent worker access.
Accordingly, AWD failed as an employer to ensure that the measures and procedures required by section 24 of Regulation 851 (the Industrial Establishments Regulation) were carried out in a workplace, contrary to section 25(1)(c) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.
In 2014, the company had been convicted of an offence under the same subsection of the Regulation and was fined $75,000 for that conviction.
Following a guilty plea, Aluminum Window Designs Ltd. was fined $90,000 in provincial offences court in Newmarket by Justice of the Peace Rhonda Shousterman; Crown Counsel Terry Wong.
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.
The law(s) in contravention:
Aluminum Window Designs Ltd. was found guilty of a contravention of the Ontario ‘Industrial’ 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 contrary to 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.”
One would believe that Aluminum Window Designs Ltd. would have re-designed their equipment to ensure compliance to the ‘Machine Guarding’ section of the ‘Industrial’ regulation. Now they have failed twice!
The ownership needs to hire health and safety people that can work independently and make safety changes to the equipment and to the workplace in general.
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.
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.