WINDSOR, Ontario – Sellick Equipment Ltd., a manufacturer and supplier of heavy machinery and rough terrain equipment, with an industrial plant located in Harrow, Ontario, has been fined $40,000 after a worker suffered critical injuries at its plant.
The company pleaded guilty provincial offences court in Windsor and was fined under Section 25(1)(b) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) for failing to keep a magnetic lifting device in good working order.
In November 2018 a worker employed at the industrial plant’s fabrication department was operating an overheard crane attached to a chain hoist and a Mag-Mate lift magnet. The magnet is high-powered magnetic device used to lift metal objects.
The worker was using the magnet to transfer a chrome plated steel bar, which weighed 233 pounds, into a drawer to be stored.
While the bar was suspended by the magnet, the worker reached beneath it to move metal bars within the storage drawer. While doing so, the chrome bar dislodged and fell, striking the worker and causing critical injuries.
The Ministry of Labour’s investigation found that the surface of the magnet was not kept clear of debris. The ministry inspector observed fragments of steel burrs and metal shavings on the bottom of the magnet.
Although the worker had received on-the-job training from Sellick, the worker had not received formal overhead crane training, nor had the worker received or reviewed the operating manual for the magnet. The manual specifically required the surface of the magnet to be kept clean from debris.
Section 25(1)(b) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) requires an employer to ensure that the equipment, materials and protective devices provided by the employer are maintained in good condition.
In addition to the $40,000 fine, the court also 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.