Blog Post #1507 – City of Greater Sudbury Fined $150,000 After Workplace Fatality

Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’

A worker, employed by the Corporation of the City of Greater Sudbury, was fatally injured when they became entangled in the machinery of a sand spreader while the auger inside was powered on. The Corporation of the City of Greater Sudbury failed, as an employer, to ensure that machinery with an exposed moving part was equipped with, and guarded by, a guard or device to prevent access to the moving part, as prescribed by Ontario Regulation 851, and contrary to the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

After attending a City of Greater Sudbury worker appreciation breakfast on May 6, 2022, a worker was advised by their supervisor to get a ride back to the Levack public works depot and then they could go home – their workday was done.

However, the worker informed their co-worker, who dropped the worker off, that they intended to remove the sand from the Wille municipal tractor unit that was stored in the Levack Depot.

The Wille unit was equipped with a rear-mounted sand spreader attachment with a spinning auger to distribute sand on the sidewalk as it traveled.

The worker was fatally injured when they became entangled in the machinery at the unguarded opening of the sand hopper that was attached to the Wille tractor, while the auger inside the sand hopper was powered on.

There were no witnesses to the incident.

Following a guilty plea in the Ontario Court of Justice in Sudbury, the Corporation of the City of Greater Sudbury was fined $150,000 by Judge Julie Lefebvre. Crown Counsel was 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:

The corporation for the City of Greater Sudbury, was found guilty of a contravention of the Ontario ‘Industrial Establishments’ sector 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 in directly violation 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.”

This is the #1 hazard reported by the MLITSD for the ‘Industrial’ sector and it has been the highest reported hazard for quite a while.

I do not know if the machine design is flawed or has the protective coverings been removed and not replaced?

Again, too bad for the employee.

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.



Leave a Comment