Blog Post #1492 – Workplace Injury Results in $175,000 Fine for Hamilton Company

Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’

An in-running nip hazard on machinery was unguarded resulting in a critical injury to a worker. The employee worked for ArcelorMittal Dofasco G.P., of Hamilton, Ontario.

On the day of the incident, four workers were preparing a production line at the company’s steel mill for a tool change. During this changeover, the line was put into jog mode, which enables the line to run at a reduced speed.

One worker attended to the weld coil, a component that is removed as part of the changeover. This requires the use of a socket wrench to release a bolted plate that holds the coil in place.

The tube steel product being manufactured travels through the weld coil and enters rollers used to guide the tube to the next part of the mill. While using the socket wrench on the weld holder plate bolts, the worker’s hand was pulled by the tube into a pinch point within the machinery causing a critical injury.

A Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development investigation found that the in-running nip hazard was unguarded. This allowed the worker to access the point of hazard.

Following a guilty plea in Provincial Offences Court in Hamilton, ON, ArcelorMittal Dofasco G.P. was fined $175,000 by Justice of the Peace Robert Munro; Crown Counsel, David McCaskill.

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:

ArcelorMittal Dofasco G.P. was found guilty of a contravention of the ‘Industrial Establishments’ sector 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.”

‘Machine Guarding’ is the number one hazard in the Ontario ‘Industrial’ sector. Most production lines have adequate guarding but many in Ontario do not. They are designed out of province and quite obviously, do not understand Health and Safety law.

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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