OHS Canada Magazine

Nova Cold Logistics fined $65,000 after worker injured by automatic door while driving forklift

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January 5, 2024
By OHS Canada

Compliance & Enforcement Fines Forklift ontario

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A cold storage company in Brampton, Ont., has been fined $65,000 after a worker was injured by an automatic rolldown door while driving a forklift.

The incident happened on Nov. 24, 2022, at Nova Cold Logistics, operating as Americold.  On that day, a worker at the facility was instructed to move pallets of product from a loading dock to a freezer room with an electric lift truck.

After the pallets were moved into the room the worker drove toward the exit. A co-worker was standing in front of the exit door, known as the H-Door.

The H-Door is a large (8-foot wide, 12-foot high), high-speed, roll-down door operated by pull cords. Once a cord is pulled the door ascends quickly and remains open for seven seconds, after which it descends quickly unless the cord is pulled again.

As the co-worker saw the worker on the lift truck approach, the co-worker pulled the cord to open the H-Door.


The worker standing on the lift truck throttled it forward towards the door while looking backward and speaking to the co-worker. By this time, the door had started to descend and came in contact with the worker causing a critical injury. The door did not reverse when it struck the worker.

The H-Door was equipped with a sensor in its bottom leading edge. When it functions properly, the sensor causes the door to reverse if it meets resistance. The sensor was not functioning at the time. There is no other means of closing or stopping the descending door in the event something is under it. There was no means of warning or alerting a worker that the door was descending and that it would not reverse.

A Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development investigation found that Nova Cold Logistics ULC o/a Americold failed to ensure that equipment, materials and protective devices provided by the employer were maintained in good condition, as required by Section 25(1)(b) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

Following a guilty plea, Nova Cold Logistics ULC o/a Americold was fined $65,000. The court also imposed 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.


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