Excerpt from the government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’
Faurecia Automotive Seating Canada Ltd. pleaded guilty and has been fined $80,000 after a worker was injured by a storage bin that collapsed while it was being pushed.
On December 7, 2013, the worker was at the company’s industrial facility at 100 Reagans Industrial Parkway in Bradford West Gwillimbury where the company manufactures seat frames for the automotive industry.
The worker was pushing an empty plastic storage bin along an aisle way in order to clear a path for another vehicle. The side of the bin collapsed and the worker fell forward into the bin. Another worker found the injured worker. The injured worker’s arms were immobile and the injured worker was unable to sit up. Emergency personnel transported the worker to hospital and the worker underwent extensive surgery.
The Ministry of Labour investigation found that the side of the bin that the worker was pushing had latches which could be used to collapse the bins for shipping. The investigation revealed the worker was not aware of the hazard of the bin potentially collapsing and that it was common for workers to push bins in the same manner.
The company was fined $80,000 by Justice of the Peace Dennis A. Wilson in Barrie court on September 22, 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.
The law(s) in contravention:
Faurecia Automotive Seating Canada Ltd. was found guilty of a contravention of the Ontario ‘Industrial’ regulation 851/90, section 45(a) which states,
“Material, articles or things,
(a) required to be lifted, carried or moved, shall be lifted, carried or moved in such a way and with such precautions and safeguards, including protective clothing, guards or other precautions as will ensure that the lifting, carrying or moving of the material, articles or things does not endanger the safety of any worker.”
Faurecia Automotive Seating Canada 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.”
Wow, here is another employer with all good intentions but never reasoning that this type of accident was to happen because a hazard assessment with the bins and their ability to collapse was never discussed.
I would wager that Faurecia feels not responsible but all actions in a facility need to have a set of written work instructions and those instructions need to be discussed prior to any work that is to be done. That is the law! Check out section 25 of the OHSA, section 2(a) for more details. If the supervisor was unaware of the safety concerns then Faurecia would have been guilty of a violation of section 25, subsection 2(c) as well.
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’, Material Handling Safety’ and ‘Standard Operating Procedures’. Contact Deborah toll free at 1-877-907-7744 or locally at 705-749-1259.
‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.
Daniel L. Beal
CHSEP – Advanced Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.