Without the proper safe work practices, safety policies are ineffective to protect workers in the workplace. A lumber company in Ontario was fined $75,000 after the critical injury of a worker while they were delivering an order of lumber in 2015. The company pleaded guilty in court as they did not provide the proper information, instruction and supervision to the worker to protect them under the Occupational Health & Safety Act (OHSA). The worker was not properly trained on how to unload lumber that was longer than 22 feet, this resulted in the beams of lumber falling on the worker after an attempt was made to unload the beams in an unsafe manner. Without being trained on how to conduct the job safely, the worker was unknowingly taking part in a dangerous work practice.
April 28th is the national day of mourning for workers who have been killed, injured or suffered illness due to hazards or occupational exposures present in their workplace. In 2017 alone, 227 workers died from a work-related injury or illness in Ontario. Safe work practices and procedures not only fulfil employer obligations, but saves lives. Always ensure that work is being done in a safe manner and that all workers are trained on how to conduct their work safely. “Every worker has the right to return home safe and sound at the end of each work day” (Ministry of Labour).
For more information on employer duties under the Occupational Health & Safety Act (OHSA), visit the act here: https://www.ontario.ca/laws/statute/90o01#BK47
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