OHS Canada Magazine

Ontario company fined $75,000 after trusses collapsed during barn construction

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February 8, 2023
By OHS Canada

Health & Safety Fines ontario

John Ernewein Ltd. in Walkerton, Ont. Photo: Google Streetview

A company in Walkerton, Ont., has been fined $75,000 after seven workers were injured when roof trusses collapsed during construction of a barn.

One worker was seriously injured in the incident on March 30, 2021, at John Ernewein Ltd., a company involved in agricultural and commercial contracting. The other six suffered minor injuries.

On the day of the incident the Company was involved in the construction of an agricultural barn. Approximately 15 workers were installing wooden trusses. During this work, 27 trusses collapsed resulting in multiple injuries.

A Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development investigation revealed that the trusses were not adequately braced.

Section 31(1)(b) of Ontario Regulation 213/91 states that every part of a project must be adequately braced to prevent any movement that may affect its stability or cause its failure or collapse.


Section 23(1)(a) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act states that the constructor must ensure the regulations are followed on the project.

By failing to ensure the trusses were adequately braced to prevent collapse, the defendant breached section 23(1)(a) of the Act, the Ministry said.

Following a guilty plea, the company was fined $75,000. 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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