OHS Canada Magazine

Power-coating facility, staffing agency fined $130,000 after temporary foreign worker injured

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April 11, 2024
By OHS Canada

Compliance & Enforcement

Photo: Adobe Stock

A powder-coating facility in Ontario, and a temporary staffing agency, have both been fined by an Ontario court after a worker was injured on the job.

The incident happened on May 24, 2023, at West End Mfg. Inc. in Listowel, Ont. A temporary foreign worker employed by Liiman Employment Inc., based in Leamington, Ont., was assigned to work at  the facility.

The facility has a paint shop with booths for sandblasting, powder-coating and baking metal. In the sandblasting booth, there is an auger system that collects sand particles in a trough in the floor. The troughs have metal grates to prevent access to the augers.

On May 24, 2023, one of the metal bars over the trough containing the centre auger was damaged beyond repair and it was removed, leaving a hazardous gap in the floor.

During their shift, the temporary worker stepped through the gap in the floor, becoming caught in the moving auger and suffering serious injuries.


Because the machine was not guarded to prevent access to the exposed moving part, West End Mfg. 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.

Liiman Employment Inc., failed as an employer to provide information, instruction and supervision to a worker with respect to safely working around augers in the sand blasting booth at West End Mfg Inc., contrary to section 25(2)(a) of the Act.

Following a guilty plea in the Ontario Court of Justice, West End Mfg. Inc. was fined $55,000 and Liiman Employment Inc. was fined $75,000.

The court also imposed 25 per cent victim fine surcharges as required by the Provincial Offences Act. The surcharges are credited to a special provincial government fund to assist victims of crime.


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