An Ontario employer has been fined $20,000 for failing to report an injury to the Ministry of Labour, showing that employers need to educate their managers about the types of injuries that must be reported under the Occupational Health and Safety Act.
A worker was injured when a loaded skid tipped and his leg became trapped under parts. He suffered a broken bone which is a “critical injury” under the OHSA. The OHSA requires employers to immediately report critical injuries to the Ministry of Labour. The employee told his supervisor and, later, human resources staff that he had broken his leg.
Four days after the accident, the Ministry of Labour contacted the company about the accident. The human resources staff said that the company was in the process of reporting to the Ministry of Labour.
The company pleaded guilty to failing to immediately report this critical injury to the MOL, contrary to section 51(1) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act. The court imposed a $20,000 fine plus the 25% “victim fine surcharge”, for a total of $25,000.
It is not always obvious what types of injuries are “critical injuries” under the OHSA. Employers should educate their managers and, where there is any doubt, obtain legal advice.
The Ministry of Labour’s press release may be accessed here.