Convicted: Graham Bros. Construction Ltd., 297 Rutherford Road South, Brampton, Ontario.
Location of Worksite: A construction project in Caledon, at the intersection of King Street and Heart Lake Road.
Description of Offence: A worker was killed after being struck by the bucket of a excavator.
Date of Offence: January 14, 2019.
Date of Conviction: November 9, 2020.
- Following a guilty plea, Graham Bros. Construction Ltd. was fined $150,000 in provincial offences court in Caledon by Justice of the Peace Jeannie Anand; Crown Counsel Dan Kleiman.
- 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.
- The company was engaged on a construction project at the intersection of King Street and Heart Lake Road in Caledon, Ontario. The job consisted of the resurfacing of a portion of King Street, including watermain repairs.
- On January 14, 2019, three Graham Bros. workers were laying water pipe in the bottom of a trench to connect a concrete catch basin.
- One of the workers was operating a hydraulic excavator at grade and was levelling the earth in the bottom of the trench with the excavator bucket. This would allow the existing pipe to be attached to the catch basin.
- A second worker was acting as a signaller and using hand signals to guide the excavator worker. A third worker, or “pipe layer” was standing at the top of the trench to one side.
- The placement of the excavator’s bucket and boom were centred on the trench and almost fully obstructed the operator’s view of the trench wall, the catch basin and the second worker although the operator could see the second worker’s hand signals.
- While a bucket of earth was being removed, the second worker was struck by the excavator bucket and was pinned between the bucket and catch basin.
- The third worker and an off-duty police officer who was hired by the company to direct traffic became aware of the event and called emergency medical services. The injured worker was taken to hospital and succumbed to the injuries.
- The defendant failed as a constructor to ensure that a signaller was in full view of the excavator operator, contrary to section 106(2)(b) of Ontario Regulation 213/91 (the Construction Projects Regulation) and section 23(1)(a) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.