Company Officials Could Face Jail, Fines in Death of Employee

Officials at an Alberta, Canada, company could face up to $500,000 in fines and up to 6 months in jail if found guilty of charges stemming from the death of one of its workers in 2003.

K. Kenn Industries Ltd. is charged with several violations of the Canadian Occupational Health and Safety Act in connection with the Oct. 22, 2003, death of a worker in Wainwright, Alberta. The worker was killed when he became caught between a winch cable and the underside of a bulldozer being towed by another bulldozer, according to the Alberta government.

Kenn Industries Ltd. is charged with:

  • Failing to ensure the health and safety of the worker;
  • Failing to ensure workers were trained in the safe operation of the equipment;
  • Failing to ensure workers were trained in the hazards specific to the operation of the equipment;
  • Failing to ensure a known safety hazard was identified and the workers were informed; and
  • Failing to ensure the equipment was properly maintained.

The company has been summoned to appear in Wainwright Provincial Court on Dec. 15. The maximum penalty for a first offense under the Occupational Health and Safety Act is $500,000 and/or 6 months in prison for each charge.

In an effort to improve workplace safety, the government of Alberta has increased penalties for violations, hired additional safety officers, recognized the province's safest employers and promoted workplace safety awareness.

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