Fort Erie metal processing company fined $220,000 for workplace safety violation

A Fort Erie company, 2236376 Ontario Inc., located at 40 Jennett Street and operating as Patriot Forge Co., was fined $220,000 on March 26, 2024, after pleading guilty to a violation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

The company, which processes metal parts, was convicted of failing to ensure a crane was properly secured during maintenance. The incident occurred on March 29, 2022, at the company’s Brantford location.

According to a court bulletin issued on April 26 by the Ontario Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development, two workers were using a scissor lift to troubleshoot a malfunctioning hoist on a 25-ton overhead crane.

After being unable to identify the problem, the crane was put back into service.

Later that day, the hoist malfunctioned again, and the workers returned to the crane on the scissor lift. While they were troubleshooting, the crane chassis moved towards the scissor lift, causing it to tip over.

The workers fell approximately 21.5 feet to the concrete floor below. One worker suffered critical injuries, while the other worker died as a result of the fall.

A Ministry investigation determined that the crane had not been properly shut down and secured during maintenance. The company was found to have contravened section 75 of Regulation 851 under the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

In addition to the fine, the court also imposed a 25 per cent victim fine surcharge, which is directed to a provincial government fund to assist victims of crime.

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