Blog Post #237 – Maple Leaf Structural Fined $150,000 after Worker Killed

Excerpt from the Government of Ontario’s ‘Newsroom’

Maple Leaf Structural Limited, now operating as Structform International Limited, of Toronto, was fined $150,000 on October 4, 2010, for a violation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act that caused a worker’s death.

On May 12, 2008, Maple Leaf Structural Limited was a subcontractor doing concrete framework at a building project at 825 Bay St. in Toronto. At the request of the constructor, Maple Leaf workers began moving an outrigger platform from the 23rd story to the 22nd story of the north tower of the project. As the crane operator moved the platform away from the 23rd floor, a worker on that story noticed a piece of cast-iron pipe rolling towards the edge of the building. The worker was unable to grab the pipe before it fell. The falling pipe struck and killed a worker crossing a mezzanine twenty floors below.

A Ministry of Labour investigation found that the mezzanine was not secured or taped off while the platform was being moved overhead. There was also no overhead protection in that location and no signage or person warning workers of the overhead hazard.

Maple Leaf Structural Limited pleaded guilty to failing to ensure an outrigger platform was moved in a manner that did not endanger a worker.

The fine was imposed by Judge Robert Bigelow. 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:

Maple Leaf Structural Limited was found guilty of violating section 37(1) of the Ontario ‘Construction regulation 213/91 which states,

“Material or equipment at a project shall be stored and moved in a manner that does not endanger a worker.”

It is really too bad that a simple task like this was not thought out completely before the attempt. My sympathies go to the family. Another death in the workplace in a province that takes the safety of every worker very serious and a top priority!

Will it ever stop? I think not but the MOL has been vigilant in striving to improve the workplace. Maybe Maple Leaf Structural Limited should acquire a copy of the OHSA and the Construction regulation just for a little light reading and begin adding health and safety to the daily agenda. Please help all of us by reading the appropriate copy of the OHSA and sector regulation. It will go a long way in improving the workplace if one is acquainted with the governing laws.

Our workers deserve so much more.

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 ‘Material Handling’ and ‘Proper Lifting Techniques’. 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 – Foundation Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.

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