Blog Post #1471 – Kitchener Company and CEO Fined $100,000 in Total for Machine Guarding Violations

Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’

THS Industries Ltd., as an employer, and Xiaoye He, as a Director, failed to take all reasonable care to ensure equipment, materials and protective devices, as prescribed by Section 25 of Ontario Regulation 851/90, were provided for nail-maker machines, leaving workers at risk of accessing moving parts inside the machines.

On December 22, 2021, occupational health and safety inspectors from the Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development (MLITSD) visited THS Industries Ltd. to investigate an anonymous complaint that workers were bypassing

The investigation found unfixed access gates on several machines. In one case, a worker was seen working inside an open access gate of a running machine. In another case, a machine’s lid was open while the machine was running.

MLITSD inspectors found that fixed guards had been removed around a significant number of nail-maker machines and at multiple locations on each machine.

There were no injuries, but the lack of a fixed guarding device created access to an in-running nip hazard that could have resulted in serious injuries to a worker.

For Xiaoye He, this was contrary to OHSA section 32(a). This was the third conviction in six years for THS Industries Ltd.

THS Industries Inc. was fined $85,000 and Xiaoye He, the company’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), was fined $15,000 following guilty pleas at the Ontario Court of Justice in Kitchener. The fines were imposed by Justice of the Peace Sharon Woodworth. Crown Counsel was Neil Dietrich.

This was the third conviction in six years for THS Industries Ltd.

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:

THS Industries Inc. was found guilty of a contravention of the Ontario ‘Industrial Establishments’ regulation 851/90, section 25 which states,

“An in-running nip hazard or any part of a machine, device or thing that may endanger the safety of any worker shall be equipped with and guarded by a guard or other device that prevents access to the pinch point.”

This is contrary to 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.”

If the reader would like to review previous examples of safety violations by THS Industries Inc. (blog post #1094, created Nov. 25, 2019) (blog post #1210, created Jan. 17, 2021)

I believe this to be one of the largest fines to a company that did not have, at the present time, a critical injury or a workplace death.

FYI, a “critical injury” can be any of the following;

“critically injured” means an injury of a serious nature that,

(a)  places life in jeopardy,

(b)  produces unconsciousness,

(c)  results in substantial loss of blood,

(d)  involves the fracture of a leg or arm but not a finger or toe,

(e)  involves the amputation of a leg, arm, hand or foot but not a finger or toe,

(f)  consists of burns to a major portion of the body, or

(g)  causes the loss of sight in an eye.

This comes directly from Ontario regulation 834.

For Xiaoye He, this was contrary to OHSA section 32(a), and it states,

“Every director and every officer of a corporation shall take all reasonable care to ensure that the corporation complies with,

(a) this Act and the regulations.”;

This was the third conviction in six years for THS Industries Ltd.

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
CEO & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.




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