Western Forest Products Inc., an integrated forest management company, has been fined $73,266.29
Western Forest Products Inc., an integrated forest management company, has been fined $73,266.29 following the death of a worker during a forestry operation at Quatse Lake, B.C.
WorkSafeBC says that Western Forest Products Inc. was the prime contractor at the forestry operation.
The incident occurred when workers had been operating a yarder in an attempt to fall a dangerous tree. Whilst doing this, an adjacent hemlock tree became uprooted and the top of the tree struck a faller, fatally injuring them.
Following the incident, WorkSafeBC conducted an investigation which determined that “falling work had not been adequately planned, coordinated, and managed, to take into account the risks associated with multiple fallers and equipment operators involved in two logging phases occurring in close proximity to each other.”
Furthermore, WorkSafeBC says that “the firm failed to plan work and maintain work areas to ensure workers were able to work in locations clear of moving logs and equipment, a repeated violation. In addition, the firm failed to communicate the boundaries of a designated safe work area to all workers. Furthermore, as prime contractor, the firm failed to establish and maintain a system to ensure compliance with the Workers Compensation Act and regulations.”
These are all deemed to be high-risk violations.
Recently, WorkSafeBC fined pressure pumping services company Element Technical Services Inc. $315K, the Vancouver Lawn and Tennis Club $37K and the Parkland Fuel Corporation $116K. All of these fines were following incidents which resulted in worker fatalities.
According to recent data, forestry is one of the most dangerous occupations in North America.