PETERSON ELECTRIC CO. LIMITED AND COMPANY OWNER FINED FOR HEALTH AND SAFETY VIOLATIONS
THUNDER BAY, Ont.--Peterson Electric Co. Limited, a Thunder Bay electrical contractor, was fined $110,000 and the company owner fined $5,000 on July 31, 2002 for two violations each of the Occupational Health and Safety Act
that resulted in a serious leg injury to an employee.
On October 14, 1999, two workers were using a "jack-all" (similar to a car jack) to elevate a trailer onto a truck hitch when the jack collapsed toward one of the workers and the trailer's "tongue" (the v-shaped front of the trailer leading to the hitch) landed on that worker's leg. The trailer was loaded with a 2,268-kilogram (5,000-pound) transformer in preparation for transport. A Ministry of Labour investigation found the load was improperly positioned on the trailer, the trailer did not have brakes applied, the wheels were not chocked and there was no fixed crank system on the trailer tongue. The incident occurred at an industrial garage on Russell Street in Thunder Bay.
Following a four-day trial, Peterson Electric Co. Limited was found guilty, as an employer, of:
Failing to ensure that a trailer loaded with a transformer was lifted in a manner that did not endanger the safety of a worker. This was contrary to Section 25(1)(c) of the act; and
Failing to provide adequate information, instruction and supervision to a worker on the safe lifting of a trailer loaded with a transformer. This was contrary to Section 25(2)(a) of the act.
Justice of the Peace Gordon Buterin, of the Ontario Court of Justice in Thunder Bay, fined the company $55,000 on each count.
The company owner was found guilty, as a supervisor, of:
Failing to ensure that workers lifted a trailer loaded with a transformer in a manner that did not endanger the safety of a worker. This was contrary to Section 27(1)(a) of the act; and
Failing to advise a worker of the danger in lifting a trailer loaded with a transformer. This was contrary to Section 27(2)(a) of the act.
Justice of the Peace Buterin fined the owner $2,500 on each count.