OHS Canada Magazine

Feature

Saskatchewan safety video goes viral for all the wrong reasons

And other OHS headlines you didn’t expect

February 26, 2020
Marcel Vander Wier

This image is a video capture of a safety video that made waves in Saskatchewan. (Twitter: @SKSafetyCouncil)

SASKATCHEWAN — A video posted on Twitter in August by the Saskatchewan Safety Council (@SkSafetyCouncil) ended up gaining attention for its awkward lesson on the importance of vehicle inspections.

As first reported by Narcity, the two-minute video follows a young couple through several date scenarios and ends with their vehicle’s lights going out just as the man was going to pop the question to his girlfriend.

The amateur videography garnered its share of unique responses from viewers, including the following from @dirk_mike99: “Wow.. hopefully this was Less than free to make.”

The video, which was posted multiple times by the safety council’s account, has collected more than 266,000 views.

Shooter drill goes sideways

MONTREAL — A Canadian police officer is seeking compensation after being shot at with live rounds during an active shooter drill in April 2014.

During the drill, another officer directed two live rounds in Valérie Guay’s direction.

She was unhurt but suffered panic attacks following the incident.

Guay pleaded her case to Quebec’s workplace health and safety board (CNESST) to have it considered a workplace accident after she developed post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), according to the CBC.

Poisoned sandwich ends in death

GERMANY — A 26-year-old worker has died, four years after falling into a coma due to his eating a sandwich laced with poison.

The accused — identified as 57-year-old Klaas O. — was sentenced to life in prison for peppering his co-workers’ lunches with mercury and other substances, though he has appealed the verdict.

He was arrested in May 2018 after surveillance video showed him sprinkling powder on a colleague’s sandwich.

Two other workers suffered kidney damage as a result, according to the Associated Press.

An erroneous emergency alert regarding the Pickering nuclear plant resulted in a major spike in medication orders. (SKyF/Adobe Stock)

Nuclear alert causes panic

PICKERING, ONT. — An emergency alert concerning the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station sent in error Jan. 12 caused a massive spike in iodide medication orders in Ontario, according to the Canadian Press.

More than 32,000 orders were placed in the two days following the false alarm.

There are normally between 100 and 200 orders per month, according to Ontario Power Generation.

The pills help protect the thyroid gland and reduce the risk of cancer if radioactive iodine is released into the air during a nuclear emergency.

Corpses in unusual places

OTTAWA — Overfilled morgues have led to bodies being left in uncommon places at health-care facilities in the nation’s capital, according to the Canadian Press.

Workers have walked into conference rooms to find bodies left there until space opened, says Lou Burri, president of CUPE Local 4000.

Area hospitals conduct autopsies, but bodies can sit for weeks or longer before they are claimed.

In 2018, 473 bodies went unclaimed.

Transylvania effect

SUDBURY, ONT. — Software company Sofvie says it has found a link between moon patterns and workplace accidents.

Data from 2017 and 2018 suggests incidents are more common during the full moon, according to the company in Sudbury, Ont.

“We started analyzing data from 2017 and 2018 and it matches up very well,” chief innovative officer Gus Minor told TimminsToday.com.

“I wouldn’t say it’s a direct correlation, but they happen to cross each other a lot.”

The company also found that workplace accidents tend to spike during a change in seasons.

Steakhouse worker goes wild

GEORGIA — A Steak ‘n Shake worker who called in sick to work during U.S. Thanksgiving because he was “intoxicated” showed up anyway and demanded money while holding a gun to a colleague’s head.

According to the Gainesville Times, 20-year-old Kentarias Gowans is charged with aggravated assault.

Gowans briefly raised the gun towards officers before dropping it.

He was arrested after a brief struggle during which a stun gun was used.

This Time Out feature was published in the Jan/Feb 2020 issue of OHS Canada.