Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’
Res 2000 Structures Inc., a Cookstown constructor, was fined $160,000 for a violation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act after a worker was killed.
On March 12, 2010, workers were installing formwork and concrete at a building project in Toronto when a worker fell about 10 meters through an opening in a concrete slab. The worker died as a result of the fall.
A Ministry of Labour investigation found that the opening’s protective floor covering, which was unmarked and unsecured, had been removed before the worker fell through.
Res 2000 Structures Inc. pleaded guilty to failing to ensure that the floor covering completely covered the opening in the work surface, was securely fastened and was adequately identified as covering an opening.
The fine was imposed by Justice of the Peace Inderpaul Chandhoke. In addition to the fine, the court 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:
Res2000 Structures Inc. was found guilty of a contravention of section 26.3 (2) of the Ontario ‘Construction’ regulation 213/91 which states,
(2) One of the following precautions shall be used to prevent a worker from falling through an opening on a work surface:
1. A guardrail system that meets the requirements of this section.
2. A protective covering that,
i. completely covers the opening,
ii. is securely fastened,
iii. is adequately identified as covering an opening,
iv. is made from material adequate to support all loads to which the covering may be subjected, and
v. is capable of supporting a live load of at least 2.4 kilonewtons per square metre without exceeding the allowable unit stresses for the material used.”
The floor covering had to be in place and fastened down to ensure it was fixed into position. There also had to be a sign showing the actual danger of a potential fall hazard and the sign had to be at least 7.5 “ in size. None of this had been done.
Any construction company should read section 26 in the construction regulation 213/91 for all their fall protection requirements. If the employer needs more information then I would suggest they look at my posts around the August 2011 time frame. There is an 8-part series that can be used to help companies develop their own internal fall protection program.
Please read them starting with blog post #119 written on August 08, 2011. Not bad for a memory, huh?
Remember – In Ontario, “ALL Accidents are Preventable”
HRS Group Inc. has a great team that can help you with all your health and safety needs including ‘Fall Protection’ and Working at Heights’. Contact Deborah toll free at 1-877-907-7744 or locally at 705-749-1259.
‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.
Daniel L. Beal
CHSEP – Foundation Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.