Blog Post #696 – Prysmian Power Cables and Systems Canada Ltd. Fined $60,000 after Worker Injured

Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’

Prysmian Power Cables and Systems Canada Ltd., a New Brunswick maker of high technology cables for energy and telecommunications, was fined $60,000 after a worker was injured.

On June 8, 2012, at the company’s Prescott, Ontario facility, a worker was cleaning a Jacket Line Extruder machine. In preparation to remove a pipe from the cooling unit, the worker disconnected the delivery and return hoses but did not open the pressure relief valve. As a result, when the worker removed the pipe from the cooling unit, hot water and steam burst out onto the worker. The worker suffered first and second degree burns.

Prysmian Power Cables and Systems Canada Ltd. pleaded guilty to failing to ensure the internal pressure of the pipe was adjusted to atmospheric pressure before the pipe was removed.

The fine was imposed by Justice of the Peace John Doran. 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:

Prysmian Power Cables and Systems Ltd. was found guilty of a contravention of section 78, subsection 1 (c) of the Ontario ‘Industrial’ regulation 851/90 which states,

“Where repairs or alterations are to be made on a drum, tank, pipeline or other container, the drum, tank, pipeline or other container shall,

(c) Not be refilled while there is any risk of vaporizing or igniting the substance that is being placed in the drum, tank, pipeline or other container.”

As I read the original newsroom report, the employer must be made aware to ensure that all possible hazards MUST be identified, assessed and controlled before the pipe was to be removed. This was also a type of hazard that has to be recognized, and through experience, discussed by all workers before the removal process.

Ensure that your organization covers all aspects of the work to be done. A little research and discussion will go a long way to preventing an injury such as this one.

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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