Ontario employer fined for worker injury

Worker was injured while operating a saw on an aluminum extrusion press

Ontario employer fined for worker injury

Ontario employer Can Art Aluminum Extrusion Canada Inc. has been fined $55,000 after one of its workers was injured in the workplace.

Following a guilty plea in the Ontario Court of Justice, Windsor, the employer was also tasked to pay a 25 per cent 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.

The incident happened on Aug. 20, 2022, when a worker was using an extrusion press saw.

The company uses an extrusion press to cast products out of aluminum alloy. The process involves forcing aluminum material through a die and then cutting the moulded aluminium with a saw.

The press has a mechanical steel plate, called a gauge head, that automatically rotates to clamp down on the extrusions at a pre-determined point to ensure the material is cut by the saw at the right length.

On the day of the incident, a worker was operating the saw to cut aluminum extrusions to the required lengths. 

However, on the post-cut side of the saw, some of the rollers on the conveyor belt were not working.

To move the extrusions along, the worker pushed the extrusions down the conveyor. The worker got injured by the gauge head during this process.

In its investigation, the Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development found that the saw had no guard to prevent access to the pinch point caused by the rotating-gauge head.

“As a result, Can Art Aluminum Extrusion Canada Inc. failed, as an employer, to ensure that the measures and procedures prescribed by section 24 of Ontario Regulation 851 were carried out in the workplace, contrary to section 25(1)(c) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act,” said the Ontario government.

Meanwhile, following the incident, the employer voluntarily enhanced its health and safety systems and implemented additional accident prevention initiatives, said the provincial government.