Blog Post #835 – Lack of Guarding Spurs Fine in Saskatchewan

Excerpt from the OH&S Canada magazine

Premium Brands Operating Group Inc. of Yorkton, Saskatchewan was fined $28,000 on February 11, 2014, after pleading guilty to failing to provide an effective safeguard for a worker who might have contacted a dangerous moving part of a machine.

The company pleaded guilty to a contravention of section 137 of the Occupational Health and Safety regulations and was fined $20,000 with an $8,000 surcharge, a statement from the Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety in Regina reports.

The conviction relates to an incident on November 1, 2011, when a worker was seriously injured while sanitizing a paddle mixer.

My opinion

The law(s) in contravention:

Premium Brands was found guilty of a contravention of the Saskatchewan OH&S regulations section 137, 1 (a) and/or (b) which states,

“Except where otherwise provided by these regulations, an employer or contractor shall provide an effective safeguard where a worker may contact:

(a) a dangerous moving part of a machine; and
(b) a pinch point, cutting edge or point of a machine at which material is cut, shaped, bored or formed.”

Machine Guarding is an important part of the working sector. Mining, construction, industrial as well as healthcare require protection for workers when there is a chance of coming in contact with a moving part of a machine.

It is THAT important!

The manufacturer also has to ensure that guarding is built into the design of the machine to meet regulatory requirements.

I remember a day where a big client of mine received a forklift from a manufacturer and it did not come with cover plates on both sides of the engine,(large class VII unit) even though they just paid of $100,000 for the vehicle. When the sales manager was asked about the lack of plates he then said he would send out a Tech to drill and install plates for a charge of $400.00. I, then, stepped in and stated that they were going to do it anyway because a report was going to the Ministry of Labour (MOL) and let them know that this forklift manufacturer was in violation of section 185 of the Mining regulation 854/90 which states,

Section 185,

1) In this section,
“machine” includes a prime mover, transmission equipment and thing.

(2) A machine that has an exposed moving part that may endanger the safety of any person shall be fenced or guarded unless its position, construction or attachment provides equivalent protection; and

(3) A machine shall be provided with a device that automatically prevents a worker operating it from coming in contact with any moving part.”

Guess what happened? They came up and installed them free of charge!

Ensure your workplace is a safe place.

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’,’Machine Guarding’ 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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