Blog Post #778 – Vince’s Spring Service Ltd. Fined $50,000 After Worker Injured

Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’

Vince’s Spring Service Ltd., a Scarborough-based company that repairs and replaces vehicular suspension systems, has pleaded guilty and has been fined $50,000 after a worker was injured.

On December 19, 2013, a worker was completing a suspension overhaul on a Town of Whitby fire truck. At certain times, the work required the tilt cab of the truck to be raised so that work could be performed underneath. The cab was raised by a tilt cylinder rod, which had to fully extend for it to be locked in place.

That afternoon, the worker was working with the cab raised. The worker was leaning over the front passenger tire of the fire truck. At this time, the tilt cylinder rod was not fully extended; no other form of blocking of the raised cab was in place.

The tilt cab control lever – which allowed the tilt cab to be lifted manually or electronically with the control pendant – was moved into the manual position. This released the hydraulics on the tilt cab. As a result, the tilt cab dropped, trapping the worker between the cab and the truck’s front passenger side tire. The worker suffered serious injuries.

The defendant pleaded guilty to failing as an employer to ensure that the tilt cab on a fire truck was blocked when repair work was being performed on it. Vince’s Spring Service Ltd. was fined by Justice of the Peace Bill Fatsis in Toronto court on April 16, 2015. 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:

Vince’s Spring Service Ltd. Was found guilty of a contravention of section 75 of the Ontario Regulation 851/90 (Industrial Establishments Regulation), section 75 which states,

“A part of a machine, transmission machinery, device or thing shall be cleaned, oiled, adjusted, repaired or have maintenance work performed on it only when,

(a) motion that may endanger a worker has stopped; and

(b) any part that has been stopped and that may subsequently move and endanger a worker has been blocked to prevent its movement.”

Vince’s Spring Service Ltd. was also found guilty of a contravention of the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA), section 25(1)(c) which states,

“An employer shall ensure that,

(c) the measures and procedures prescribed are carried out in the workplace.”

The working world would be so much better off if employers chose to ensure they were in full compliance with the OHSA and associated regulations. That is the law!

Where were the safety concerns via a hazard assessment being done? Where was the supervisor and why did he/she not relate the safety concerns and ensuring the workers were aware of the operation?

Why was the city of Whitby not held accountable as well? Please explain why the truck manuals not available and the hydraulic cylinders not discussed.

I guess we will never know but I believe there were more at fault here than just Vince’s Spring Service Ltd.

Ensure your workplace is a safe place!

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’, ‘Maintenance Safety Awareness’ 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.

Leave a Comment