Blog Post #748 – Pedestrian Killed by Steel Plate

Excerpt from the OH&S Canada magazine

A pedestrian in Montreal has been killed by a falling object on a construction site.

Saad Syed, a 32-year-old teacher at the GEOS Language Academy, died of severe head trauma on August 05, 2013, after being struck by a falling steel metal plate that broke from a front-end Payloader. The driver of the Payloader, which was moving the metal plate at the time of the incident, was treated for shock.

“We’re making a full investigation to identify exactly what happened and what the cause of the accident was,” says Daniel Legault, a spokesperson for the Commission de la santé et de la securitè du travail (CSST).
Pomerleau Construction, which was building a high-end condo complex at the site, shut down the worksite for the day after the incident occurred.

“Until the full investigation is complete, we’ve asked the employer to comply with certain actions,” Legault says, adding that work can resume on the condition that there is no risk to the safety of workers or pedestrians around the site.

The incident took place after a two-week summer holiday for about 160,000 construction workers in Quebec. The CSST says there tends to be a spike in construction accidents during the four months following this annual vacation. Last year, the province’s construction industry reported 7,537 accidents – 42% of which occurred between August and November.

Legault suggests that there is a possible connection between this incident and the holiday period. “It’s normal after a vacation for people’s minds to be more on the vacation than on work, he says. “That’s why we remind employers and workers to be vigilant.”

The CSST released a French-language statement on post-vacation issues in the construction sector just hours before the fatality.

The statement recommends that contractors and employees work together to avoid all safety risks. Employers are urged to establish a prevention program to identify and control hazards, while workers are advised to use the necessary protective equipment.

My opinion

It is not often that a pedestrian is injured or hurt on a job site. Prevention methods prior to any work usually surrounds the construction zone so that no one can inadvertently enter the site. After almost 750 blog posts, I can safely say that none of the prior reports and posts concern pedestrian accidents.

It sure would be interesting to see what the corrective action plan would be.


Ensure your workplace is a safe place for both workers AND pedestrians. You will certainly be glad you did.

Remember – In Canada, “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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