OHS Canada Magazine

Ontario company fined $100,000 after supervisor hurt during construction of bridge

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December 12, 2023
By OHS Canada

Health & Safety Bridges Construction Fines ontario

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A Brampton, Ont.-based company has been fined $100,000 after a worker was critically injured during the construction of a bridge in St. Catharines, Ont.

On March 9, 2022, a quality control inspection supervisor for Sin Structures Inc. was doing the final inspection of the girder/truss for a bridge that was being assembled in an industrial building.

The supervisor was accompanied by the lead hand/welder fitter. All other production workers, including the crane operator, were on a scheduled break. The C3 and C4 overhead cranes were not locked and secured, and the pendant remotes were left out and accessible.

To get a better view, the supervisor positioned themselves side-saddle on the steel jig inside the bridge glider and noticed a bolt was improperly positioned. To fix this, the bridge girder/truss had to be moved so the bolt hole locations could match the engineered drawings.

Since all material handlers and crane operators were on break, the lead hand/welder fitter chose to operate the overhead crane to move the bridge girder/truss the quarter inch needed. They did this by jogging the remote for the overhead crane.


While they did this, the bridge assembly moved uncontrollably (approximately four feet in distance) causing the diagonal cord (cross member) of the bridge girder/truss to move across the steel jig to where the supervisor was seated.

This created a pinch point, and the supervisor was seriously injured as result.

By failing to ensure the bridge girder/truss was moved in a way that did not endanger the safety of a worker, as outlined in Reg 851/90, section 45(a), Sin Structures Inc. violated section 25(1)(c) of the Act.

Following a guilty plea in the Ontario Court of Justice, Sin Structures was fined $100,000. The court also imposed a 25 per cent victim fine surcharge as required by theĀ Provincial Offences Act. The surcharge is credited to a special provincial government fund to assist victims of crime.


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