Four Mission companies were among the 289 employers who received fines from WorkSafeBC last year, according to its 2011 enforcement report.
Of those four, three were roofing companies penalized for not having adequate fall protection equipment or plans.
“Monetary penalties are imposed on employers for repeated or serious violations of occupational health and safety regulations and to motivate to comply with their legal responsibilities,” said Jeff Dolan of WorkSafeBC in a statement accompanying the report. “An employer is not penalized if they have taken all reasonable steps to prevent risks to their workers.”
The largest fine went to Iron Mountain Cedar Products Ltd. for $37,574.45 last May 27, when a worker suffered serious injuries after falling backwards into an unguarded, rotating swing saw blade.
In the report it said, “the firm failed to ensure the health and safety of its workers” and that adequate information, instruction, training, and supervision were not provided. It also said regular inspections to prevent the development of unsafe working conditions were not conducted, and the firm’s health and safety program did not include written safe work procedures for individual job positions or for inspections, nor were there provisions for instruction and supervision of workers in the safe performance of their work.
The other three companies received fines based on warnings that their fall protection plans were inadequate.
Active Roofing Ltd. received a $2,870.28 fine June 30 when four workers were working without fall protection on a sloped roof six metres (20 feet) above the ground. The report said this was a repeat violation from the company.
WCB rules stipulate fall protection or a fall protection management plan must be enacted when workers are three metres (10 feet) above the ground.
Peter Bernard Hopkins received a $2,549 fine Nov. 18 when two workers were at the edge of a sloped roof of a two-storey house without using fall protection, while two other workers as well as the owner were working without fall protection on the roof.
Lambertus Johannes Zonderland was fined $2,500 Aug. 30 when a young worker was 7.5 metres (25 feet) above the ground without fall protection or a fall protection plan.
Of the 352 penalties issued by WCB across B.C. in 2011, 174 were fall protection violations, constituting just under 50 per cent.
The report can be read in its entirety at the WorkSafeBC website.