Blog Post #993 – Auto Parts Company Fined

Excerpt from the government of OH&S Canada magazine

Precision Technologies, an auto parts company, was sentenced to pay an $80,000 fine following an explosion at an auto parts factory in 2013.

According to the court bulletin from the Ministry of Labour (MOL), the incident took place at one of their two locations in Mississauga on July 04, of that year. A worker in the foundry was examining two propane-fueled torch wands, when an explosion sent the worker flying to a concrete floor six feet below, causing burns and fractures. It turned out that the worker had failed to perform the task previously and had not received any of the required training for it. Neither did the company have an established procedure for completing the task safely, although it later developed one following the incident.

Precision Technologies pleaded guilty to failing to provide and employee with the information, instruction and supervision on proper procedures for what is known as a “pre-heat pump well procedure.”

My opinion

The law(s) in contravention:

Precision Technologies was found guilty of a contravention of the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) section 25, subsection 2 (a) which states,

“An employer shall,

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

Precision Technologies would have been in contravention of the same Act, section 25, subsection 1(c) which states,

“An employer shall ensure that,

  • the measures and procedures prescribed are carried out in the workplace.”

The company should have practiced ‘Due Diligence’ in their day-to-day operations. The definition of “Due Diligence” can be described this way:

Due Diligence

“The care that a reasonable person exercises to avoid harm to other persons or their property.”

A properly completed JHA, would have identified, assessed and controlled the hazard long before it became an incident/accident and the worker would have bee protected. Training would have been included as part of the procedure.

What Is a JHA (Job Hazard Analysis)?

According to OSHA’s definition, a JHA is “a technique that focuses on job tasks as a way to identify hazards before they occur.” So, the basic idea is that you:

  • break a job down into the various tasks it involves
  • identify hazards associated with each task

According to OSHA again, the JHA “focuses on the relationship between the worker, the task, the tools, and the work environment.”

HRS Group Inc. can help your company become more safety-conscience and offers courses on “Supervisory”, “Due Diligence”, “Propane Heaters and Torches” (certified instructor for the Canadian Propane Association, (CPA)) as well as many others. We have the staff and know how to make things right. Contact Deborah at (705) 749-1259 for more details. We are situated in Peterborough, Ontario but we can travel anywhere we are needed.

Ensure your workplace is a safe place.

Remember – In Ontario, “ALL Accidents are Preventable”

‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.

Daniel L. Beal

CHSEP – Advanced Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.

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