Crane Rental Company, Supervisor Fined for Health And Safety Violations

All Canada Aerials Ltd., a Mississauga, Ontario, company that rents cranes and other industrial aerial lifting equipment, was fined $125,000 and a company supervisor was fined $10,000 on Nov. 1 for one violation each of Canada's Occupational Health and Safety Act that resulted in the death of a new employee, according to the Ontario Ministry of Labour.

On Feb. 18, 2004, a trailer truck driver, whose duties involved picking up and delivering various types of equipment, was at a customer site attempting to load a "genie boom" (a vehicle equipped with an elevating bucket designed to lift workers to various heights) onto a trailer when the driver sustained serious head injuries, according to the Ministry of Labour.

It was the driver's 6th day on the job, according to the ministry. At the time of the incident, the driver was in the genie boom's bucket operating the boom's controls when the genie boom started to accelerate backward off the trailer.

The driver was not wearing a safety harness and was thrown out of the bucket as the genie boom rolled off the trailer's edge and tilted to one side, the ministry says. The driver's head struck a tanker truck parked alongside the trailer.

Taken by ambulance to St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto, the driver died on Feb. 28, 2004. The incident occurred at Castrol North America in Etobicoke, Ontario.

Investigation: Driver Had No Prior Training in Operating Genie Boom

A Ministry of Labour investigation determined the driver had no training for or experience in operating the genie boom prior to being employed by All Canada Aerials Ltd. on Feb. 12, 2004.

The ministry also found that operation of the genie boom was not covered by the brief training sessions provided to the driver by the company.

All Canada Aerials Ltd. pleaded guilty, as an employer, to failing to ensure the driver was competent to operate the genie boom, as required by Section 51(2)(a)(i) of the Regulations for Industrial Establishments. This was contrary to Section 25(1)(c) of the act.

In addition, a supervisor pleaded guilty to failing to ensure the driver was competent to operate the genie boom, as required by Section 51(2)(a)(i) of the Regulations for Industrial Establishments. This was contrary to Section 27(1)(a) of the act.

The fines were imposed by Justice of the Peace John Farnum of the Ontario Court of Justice in Brampton, Ontario. In addition to the fines, the court imposed a 25-percent 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.

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