Blog Post #595 – Langille Fined $60,000 after Worker Permanently Injured Dismantling Salvage

Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’

An employer who failed to properly supervise a worker who was permanently injured when a tire exploded has pleaded guilty in court and fined $60,000.

On October 12, 2011, a worker employed by 1494366 Ontario Inc. – carrying on business as Langille’s Scrap & Cores – was dismantling a truck at the work site at 150 Ranch Industrial Park Road in Port Perry. The worker was attempting to remove a tire using a propane torch to loosen the lug nuts. The worker did not first deflate and remove the tire from its rim.

Most of the lug nuts were removed when the tire exploded from the wheel assembly. The worker was thrown more than 20 feet and sustained cracks and fractures in limbs, a dislocated knee, torn tendons, facial fractures and loss of an ear.

A Ministry of Labour investigation determined that the cause of the explosion was the use of the propane torch on the tire. Heating a wheel rim that has a tire mounted to it can result in an increase of tire pressure, the degradation of the tire’s chemical and mechanical properties, and the release of flammable gases within the tire, as well as an explosion.

Langille’s Scrap & Cores pleaded guilty to failing as an employer to provide information, instruction and supervision to a worker to protect the health and safety of the worker contrary to the Occupational Health and Safety Act. A fine of $60,000 was imposed by Justice of the Peace Ronald Prestage. 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.

My opinion

The law(s) in contravention:

Langille’s Scrap and Cores was found guilty of a contravention of section 25, subsection 2 (c) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, (OHSA) which states,

“An employer shall,

Provide the information, instruction and supervision to a worker to protect the health or safety of the worker.”

Langille should have been training their employees and kept a set of SOPs for almost every contingency.
I could not believe that a propane torch was used and all the associated hazards not discussed. This is a totally unacceptable situation and now an employee is permanently disfigured because of the lack of professionalism of the behalf of this company.

I know that this company had not planned on this type of event ever happening BUT they did not plan on it never happening either.

Can you believe that this actually happened?

Enough said.

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 ‘Due Diligence’ and ‘Standard Operating Procedures’. Contact Deborah toll free at 1-877-907-7744 or locally at 705-749-1259.

We can also be reached at 

‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.

Daniel L. Beal
CHSEP –Advanced Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.

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