Excerpts from the Ontario Government’s “Newsroom”
Jebco Industries Inc., a Barrie manufacturer of metal products, was fined $70,000 on January 28, 2010, for a violation under the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) after a worker was injured.
On January 17, 2008, a Jebco worker was working on the door of a mining skip, a device used to bring mined material out of a mine, at Jebco’s former facility in Innisfil, Ontario. A chain from a crane was used to keep the door open. The eye-bolt that attached the chain to the door broke. The door abruptly closed on the worker, causing pelvis fractures and broken fingers.
A Ministry of Labour investigation found that the eye-bolt used was not appropriate for the type of lifting used on the skip door.
Jebco Industries Inc. pleaded guilty under the OHSA of failing to provide information, instruction and supervision about the use of an eye-bolt to protect the worker.
The fine was imposed by Justice of the Peace Dennis D. White. 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:
Jebco Industries Inc. was found guilty of a contravention of the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) section 25, subsection 2(h) which states,
“The employer shall provide information, instruction and supervision to a worker to protect the health or safety of the worker.”
How much simpler can it be than that! The company has the responsibility to protect the worker and Jebco Industries Inc. should have investigated to see if the eye-bolt was appropriate for the job.
As a certified trainer for ‘Crane’ lifting and rigging, I can say that the parts are to be used according to the manufacturer’s safe application and meets all appropriate engineering standards. The supervisor should have had a toolbox meeting prior to the event to determine if the set up was safe.
The lifting of a load with an overhead crane is a planned event and more than the operator should have been involved. There may have been a need for a spotter, something that would have been addressed at the toolbox meeting. The supervisor, should have been given theory training to better determine the safe practices in their workplace.
I have a few clients that follow safe practices with the numerous cranes at their facility. Nothing is left to chance. The toolbox meeting is handled by the supervisor and/or the group leader, ands all aspects and concerns are addressed there.
If the supervisor has not been given the theory for crane, lifting and rigging, then the supervisor was not competent under the ACT. That means the company was in violation of the following,
Section 25, subsection 2(c)
“The employer, when appointing a supervisor, must appoint a competent person.”
Competency under the ACT covers three different aspects:
1) Must have the training knowledge and experience to organize the work;
2) Must know the appropriate sections of the ACT and its regulations that apply;
3) Must know the hazards associated with whatever training subject is brought up.
Since most personal fines are up to $25,000 for personal contraventions of the ACT and the company can be fined up to $500,000 for the same, the company ended up very lucky. If a death had occurred, the fines would have been up in the range just listed.
HRS Group Inc. has a great team that can help you with all your health and safety needs including “Due Diligence”. Contact Deborah toll free at 1-877-907-7744 or locally at 705-749-1259.
We can also be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Remember — In Ontario, “ALL Accidents are Preventable”
‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.
Daniel L. Beal
CHSEP – Foundation Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.