Blog Post #1519 – Dundas Concrete Products Manufacturer Fined $225,000 After Workplace Fatality

Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’

A worker was found fatally injured inside a steel concrete mixing tank. Coreslab Structures (Ont.) Inc. failed, as an employer, to ensure that where starting a Planetary Concrete Mixer may endanger the safety of a worker, the control switches were locked out, as prescribed in Ontario Regulation 851, and contrary to the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

Coreslab Structures (Ont.) Inc. uses a steel concrete mixing tank called a Planetary Concrete Mixer in the production of precast concrete products.

At the end of every shift, the mixer requires cleaning, including the inside where the concrete is mixed. Cleaning inside requires a worker to go into the mixer through one of two top entry hatches.

To ensure the mixer is safe to clean, Coreslab Structures developed a step-by-step safe cleaning procedure and provided it to workers appointed to clean the equipment. The safe cleaning procedure in place prior to the incident included:

    • turning the mixer main panel dial to “off”
    • applying the worker’s own LOTO (lock out tag out) device to the main panel lever
    • physically turning and removing two keys from the main panel
    • placing those keys into each of the hatch locks to allow access into the mixer

Each one of these safety steps, when performed on its own, stopped the mixer from operating. However, Coreslab Structures Inc. trained workers to perform all of the steps.

Prior to the incident, both hatch locks had ceased working due to a build-up of concrete and concrete dust within the locking mechanisms, and both had been removed for repair. As a result, access into the mixer did not, at that time, require unlocking the hatch locks with the keys from the main panel to permit temporary access to the operating mixer.

On October 18, 2021, a worker was found fatally injured inside a Planetary Concrete Mixer. There were no eyewitnesses to the incident.

Following a guilty plea in Provincial Offences Court in Hamilton, Ontario, Coreslab Structures (Ont.) Inc. was fined $225,000 by Justice of the Peace Kelly Visser. 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:

Coreslab Structures Inc. was found guilty of a contravention of the Ontario ‘Industrial Establishment’ sector regulation 851/90, section 76, subsection (a) which states,

“Where the starting of a machine, transmission machinery, device or thing may endanger the safety of a worker,

(a) control switches or other control mechanisms shall be locked out.”

This is a direct 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.”

As the reader can see, the employer failed the worker. The procedure, developed by Coreslab, sounds like the worker was properly supervised by a “Competent Supervisor”.

HRS Group Inc. has a great team that can help you with all your health and safety needs including ‘Due Diligence’.

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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