Excerpt from the Government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’
Kone Inc., an elevator and escalator manufacturer, was fined $90,000 on July 7, 2010, for a violation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act that caused an injury to a worker.
On September 11, 2008, a worker was fixing the circuit board for an elevator at the University of Western Ontario. The worker was on a ladder in the pit and shaft area of the elevator while the elevator’s power was still on. The worker was not using rubber gloves, mats, shields or other equipment to protect against electrical shock. The worker touched the back of the circuit board, received an electrical shock, and fell to the concrete floor of the pit. The worker suffered wrist and facial fractures.
Kone Inc. pleaded guilty to failing to ensure the worker used rubber gloves, mats, shields and other protective equipment and procedures adequate to ensure protection from electrical shock and burns.
The fine was imposed by Justice of the Peace Robert Gay. 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:
Konc Inc. was found guilty for a violation of section 42.1(2) of the ‘Industrial’ regulation 851 which states,
“The worker shall use rubber gloves, mats, shields and other protective equipment and procedures adequate to ensure protection from electrical shock and burns while performing the work.”
Can you believe that someone would be allowed not to be insulated around energized equipment? I find it very hard to believe. A worker needs to have all the protective equipment, all the protective training to ensure the safety of the worker. Do you believe Konc Inc. had their employee’s safety in mind?
The employer needs to review section 25 of the ACT, in its entirety, before the worker attends a work site. The day will come when all employers understand their responsibilities and ensure the workers will be at the top of the priority list instead of the bottom.
The supervisor should be fully versed in section 27 of the OHSA. Again, the section is there to instruct the supervisor about the expected supervisory requirements about health and safety in the workplace. If only the supervisor was aware of his/her responsibility under the ACT. The worker would have been protected and the accident would have been a potential incidental ‘Near Miss’ instead. Due Diligence is always the order of the day.
Remember — In Ontario, “ALL Accidents are Preventable”
HRS Group Inc. has a great team that can help you with all your health and safety need including ‘Electrical Safety Awareness’ and ‘Lockout and Tagout’. Contact Deborah toll free at 1-877-907-7744 or locally at 705-749-1259.
‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.
Daniel L. Beal
CHSEP – Foundation Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.