Blog Post #697 – Fabricushion Fined $70,000 after Worker Injured

Excerpt from the Ontario government’s ‘Newsroom’

Fabricushion, a Markham latex and cloth lamination plant, was fined $70,000 after a worker was injured.

On May 30, 2012, a worker went to retrieve a hand cart at the Fabricushion plant at 259 Steelcase Road in Markham. The hand cart had been placed behind a forklift. At the same time a supervisor reversed the forklift, pinning the worker between the forklift and the hand cart. The worker suffered a critical leg injury.

Fabricushion pleaded guilty to failing to provide information, instruction and supervision to a worker to protect the health or safety of the worker.

The fine was imposed by Justice of the Peace Philip N. Solomon. 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:

Fabricushion was found guilty of a contravention of section 25, subsection 2(a) of the occupational health and safety act, (OHSA) which states,

“An employer shall,

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

I wonder which one, information, instruction and/or supervision, was not provided? Let us look at this more closely. The worker should have received the appropriate information on the associated hazards dealing with forklift trucks. Secondly, the worker should have been properly instructed on those hazards and finally, it was the supervisor that actually ran over the worker with the forklift. It seems Fabricushion was in violation of all three.

Section 51, subsection 2 of the Ontario ‘Industrial’ regulation 851/90 also states,

“A lifting device shall be operated,

(a) only by,
(i) a competent person, or
(ii) a worker being instructed who is accompanied by a competent person.”

If the supervisor was a competent operator, he/she would have known to look backwards before backing up. This is part of every training course I have ever been aware of.

Please ensure your workers and supervisors are competent to do the work.

By the way, the employer was also in contravention of section 25, subsection 2(c) of the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) which states,

“An employer shall ensure that,

When appointing a supervisor, appoint a competent person.” Fabricushion sure goofed here.

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 ‘Forklift Certification’, ‘Due Diligence’ and ‘Forklift Re-Certification’. 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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