Canadian Occupational Safety

March/April 2020

Canadian Occupational Safety (COS) magazine is the premier workplace health and safety publication in Canada. We cover a wide range of topics ranging from office to heavy industry, and from general safety management to specific workplace hazards.

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Page 8 of 35 9 TORONTO METAL PROCESSOR FINED $187,500 FOR WORKER FATALITY VENTURE STEEL , a metal processor and distributor in Toronto, has been fined a total of $187,500 for the death of a worker. The court imposed a fine of $150,000, plus a 25-per-cent victim fine surcharge of $37,500. On Oct. 4, 2017, a Venture Steel worker was separating steel coils and preparing them for packaging and shipment. They were working on a particular "slitter line," which is an arrangement of machines used to slit one master steel coil into smaller or narrower ones. Steel coils strapped with metal banding are transferred by coil car onto one of four arms of a transfer turret called a turnstile. A device called the downender is critical to the movement of the coils. It is a roller conveyor mounted on a pivoting frame in either a vertical or horizontal position. In the vertical position, it receives the steel coils, then pivots to the horizontal to transfer the coil to a conveyor. It appears that the worker was preparing to package a steel coil. At this point, the downender was in the horizontal position. The worker operated the control panel to bring the downender to the upright position, which triggered an automatic extension toward the turnstile's arm. The worker was in the working space and was trapped and pinched. Other workers freed the worker by pressing the E-stop button on the machine. The worker was taken to hospital but succumbed to the injuries. There were no safety devices such as guards, light curtains or mats in place to prevent access to the unguarded pinch point hazard created by the horizontal movement of the machine. It was observed in a surveillance video that the downender machine was in motion at the time of the incident and not blocked or locked out in any way. There is another similar line in the workplace where a safety mat is installed to prevent access to the same type of pinch point. At the time of the incident, a guarding plan for the slitter line was produced for the (then) Ministry of Labour's occupational health and safety inspector, but this had not yet been implemented. Section 24 of the Industrial Establishments Regulation (Ontario Regulation 851) requires that where a machine has an exposed moving part that may endanger the safety of any worker, the machine shall be equipped with and guarded by a guard or other device that prevents access to the moving part. In this case, Venture Steel did not ensure that the hazard to worker safety created by the machine in question was guarded to prevent access. Plywood company fined nearly $300K for worker death British Columbia's Richmond Plywood has been fined $280,296 for the death of a worker. The individual noticed smoke coming from a chipper building and removed an access panel on a woodchipper. The panel came into contact with moving machinery and struck the worker. WorkSafeBC determined the following: The removable access panel was an insufficient safeguard; the safety gate did not have proper signage; and there was no risk assessment for the chipper. The firm failed to ensure that safeguards met acceptable standards, energy-isolating devices were locked out, protective devices were in good condition and workers were trained in fire prevention and emergency evacuation procedures. "It appears that the employer was aware of the hazard but failed to install a guard prior to the accident. Guarding hazards should be treated as a top safety priority." Ryan Conlin, Stringer Robot pins worker against conveyor, company fined $70,000 On May 22, 2016, a worker was in a robot palletizing cage when the robot arm activated and pinned the worker against the conveyor, resulting in serious crush injuries. A. Lassonde pleaded guilty to section 384(1) of Alberta's Occupational Health and Safety Code for failing to ensure the design, construction, installation, testing, start-up, operation and maintenance of an industrial robot system complied with CSA Z434-003 (R2008), Industrial Robots and Robot Systems General Safety Requirements. The Calgary-based company was fined $70,000 inclusive of the 15-per-cent victim fine surcharge and placed on two years of corporate probation. Death by carbon monoxide results in $151K fine Royop Development Corporation has been fined $151,150 for the death of a worker. On April 30, 2016, a security guard working the night shift at a shopping plaza in Fort McMurray, Alta. was reported missing by their spouse. The worker was found in the security office having died of carbon monoxide overexposure. Royop was fined $1,000 plus $150 for the 15-per- cent victim fine surcharge and placed on two years of corporate probation. The company was also ordered to pay $150,000 in favour of the Alberta Association for Safety Partnerships to fund the development of an OHS course for the property management industry.

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