M & P Tool Products Inc. pleaded guilty in court and received a fine of $80,000 after a worker suffered permanent injuries while operating a machine.
M & P Tool Products produces metal parts which are used in the construction of racking structures and the workplace at 43 Regan Road in Brampton contains several industrial presses that are used by workers to create various metal parts.
The incident took place on February 23, 2016 and involved a temporary employment agency worker who began working at the company’s manufacturing facility the previous December.
The worker was asked to make storage racking beams using the Accurpress brake press model 71008. The Accurpress brake press is a machine that is used to bend and manipulate sheet metal. It is operated by two foot pedals; one foot pedal lowers the top die while the other raises the top die.
The brake press is equipped with a device known as a light curtain, which transmits a beam of light across the pinch point created by the dies. To effectively guard against access to the pinch point, the light curtain must be adjusted for the type of job being performed. Prior to the worker’s use of the brake press, it had not been adjusted in accordance with the specifications of the job to be performed.
The worker had not received training or instruction from M & P Tool Products with respect to the safe operation of the brake press, including any training or instruction relating to adjustment of the light curtain. Immediately prior to operating the machine, the worker observed a colleague operate the machine for approximately five minutes.
Later, while operating the brake press, the worker suffered injuries when two fingers were caught in the pinch point between the dies and the metal being bent. As a result, the worker suffered an injury.
The Ministry of Labour investigated this incident and concluded, based on the evidence gathered, that M & P Tool Products committed the offence of failing as an employer to provide information, instruction and supervision to the worker with respect to the safe operation of the Accurpress brake press, contrary to section 25(2)(a) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.
M & P Tool Products Inc. was fined $80,000 by Justice of the Peace Jeannie Anand in Brampton court on June 13, 2017.
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.
New and young workers in Ontario are more likely to be injured during the first few months on the job than other workers, and are three times more likely to be injured during their first month on the job than at any other time.