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Part-Owner of Company Convicted, Fined Personally under OHSA

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Company owners are not immune from potential convictions and fines under workplace safety laws.

A part-owner of a company has been personally convicted and fined $12,000.00 under the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act after a worker became entangled in a machine and died.

According to the Ontario Ministry of Labour’s press release, a worker fell into a hopper that kneads and cuts pasta dough, after he had been standing on a platform ladder to access the hopper portion of a machine.  The machine was in operation.

The Ministry of Labour found that an interlock switch designed to shut off the machine when a cover to the hopper is opened was not functioning.

The company part-owner, who was also a supervisor, pleaded guilty to failing, as a supervisor, to take every precaution reasonable in the circumstances for the protection of a worker.

The company was also convicted under the OHSA for failing, as an employer, to ensure that the equipment, materials and protective devices provided by the employer were maintained in good condition.  The company was fined $120,000.00.