Two workers catch fire, company fined $80K

Project lacked emergency procedures

Ottawa Permanent Roofing has been fined $80,000 by the Ontario Ministry of Labour for an incident in which a worker suffered critical injuries when a fire broke out on a rooftop balcony.


On July 5, 2017, Ottawa Permanent Roofing was hired by a homeowner to supply and install a new roof on a two-storey residential home, including a second-storey balcony. 


Adhesive glue used in the installation of the balcony membrane caught fire while three workers were present on the balcony. Two of the workers caught fire. One received serious burns to the arms, legs and torso as a result.


There was no fire extinguisher on the balcony. There were no written emergency procedures for the project. Workers did not have an adequate means of egress from the balcony during an emergency. 

Section 17(1) of the Regulation for Construction Projects prescribes that "A constructor shall establish for a project, written procedures to be followed in the event of an emergency and shall ensure that the procedures are followed at the project."

Section 52 of the regulation prescribes that "fire extinguishing equipment shall be provided at readily accessible and adequately marked locations at a project," and "at least one fire extinguisher shall be provided...where flammable liquids or combustible materials are stored, handled or used."

Section 71 of the regulation prescribes that "adequate means of egress shall be provided from a work area to permit the evacuation of workers during an emergency."

Ottawa Permanent Roofing failed to ensure that the measures and procedures prescribed by sections 17.1, 52, and 71 of the Regulation for Construction Projects were complied with at the workplace, contrary to section 23(1)(a) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

Source: Ontario Ministry of Labour