On-Site Magazine

Contractor fined after worker killed by excavator on Caledon, Ont. road project

November 25, 2020   By On-Site Staff

A worked killed on a road resurfacing and watermain repair project in Caledon, Ont. last winter has resulted in a $150,000 fine for Graham Bros. Construction Ltd.

The company pleaded guilty to failing to meet provincial health and safety regulations in court earlier this month for the incident at King Street and Heart Lake Road, which resulted in a worker being pinned in a trench by an excavator bucket.

The Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development said in January 2019, three workers — one operating an excavator, one in a trench and one standing on top of a trench — were laying a water pipe on the bottom of a trench to connect to a catch basin. The worker in the trench was acting as a signaller as the excavator operator levelled the bottom of the trench using the bucket.

With the machine’s bucket and boom “almost fully” obstructing the operator’s view of the trench wall, the worker in the trench was struck by the excavator bucket and pinned against catch basin. The worker at the top of the trench, as well as an off-duty police officer directing traffic, called emergency services, but the injured worker later died in hospital, the ministry said.

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According to the province’s Occupational Health and Safety Act, signallers must be in “full view” of the equipment operator they are directing. Graham faces the $150,000 fine, plus the customary 25 per cent victim surcharge.


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