Ontario: Plastic Maker Fined $50,000 for Safety Violation

Integrated Packaging Films Inc., an Ayr, Ontario-based manufacturer of plastic used in packaging, has been fined $50,000 (U.S. $43,319) for a violation of Ontario's Occupational Health and Safety Act that resulted in a serious arm injury to an employee.

On May 10, 2004, a worker was standing near a machine used in the production of plastic when the worker's arm became caught in rollers and was drawn into the machine, according to the Ontario Ministry of Labor. A second worker stopped the machine by hitting an emergency stop button.

A Ministry of Labor investigation found the machine had no guarding device to prevent access to the rollers' pinch point.

Integrated Packaging Films pleaded guilty, as an employer, to failing to ensure an in-running nip hazard or any part of the machine that could endanger a worker's safety was equipped with, and guarded by, a guarding device, as required by Section 25 of the Regulations for Industrial Establishments. This violated Section 25(1)(a) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

Justice of the Peace Robert Gay of the Ontario Court of Justice in Kitchener also 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.

Exchange rate is as of Feb. 14.

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