October 2, 2020
Convicted: Welldone Inc., 48 Galaxy Boulevard, Suite 403, Toronto, Ontario, a company that specializes in restoration work.
Location of Workplace: A 13-storey residential building located at 57 Forest Avenue in Hamilton.
Description of Offence: A worker fell from the roof of the building and was killed by the fall. The worker was not protected by a guardrail or travel restraint system as required by law.
Date of Offence: October 15, 2018.
Date of Conviction: October 1, 2020.
- Following a guilty plea, Welldone Inc. was fined $150,000 in provincial offences court in Hamilton by Justice of the Peace Patrice Valeriano; Crown Counsel Line Forestier.
- 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.
- The construction project consisted of the restoration of balconies on a 13-storey residential building. The restoration work was performed from a suspended swing stage.
- The repair work on two wings had been completed. The incident occurred during the set up for work to be performed on the third of four wings.
- Two workers were on the rooftop at the time of the incident. They were not wearing any fall protection equipment and were not otherwise protected from the hazard of falling off the edge of the building.
- The workers were marking measurements to indicate the new location for a beam to support the suspended swing stage. One worker was on hands and knees and held and watched the live end of the measuring tape. The other worker took the zero end of the measuring tape and walked away towards the end of the wing to mark the location of the beam.
- The worker on hands and knees saw the measuring device continue beyond the expected distance and yelled for the co-worker to stop. At that point,the co-worker screamed while falling off the edge of the building. The co-worker was pronounced dead at the project by a regional coroner.
- Employers must follow the Occupational Health and Safety Act and Regulation 213/91, which applies to construction projects, to protect workers on a project. One such requirement is section 26.1(2) which states a worker must be protected from falling when working at a height of more than three metres. Various fall protection methods can be used to protect a worker including, for example, a guardrail or a travel restraint system that prevents a worker from reaching the edge of a surface.
- The defendant failed to ensure a worker was protected by a means of fall protection outlined is section 26.1(2) and thereby violated section 25(1)c of the OHSA.