December 21, 2020
Convicted: Thyssenkrupp Elevator (Canada) Limited, 160 Elgin Street, Suite 2600, Ottawa, Ontario.
Location of Workplace: 222 Nepean Stteet, Ottawa, Ontario.
Description of Offence: A worker was injured while repairing an elevator that had not been properly locked out.
Date of Offences: February 5, 2019.
Date of Conviction: December 15, 2020.
- Following a guilty plea, Thyssenkrupp Elevator (Canada) Limited was fined $55,000 in provincial offences court in Ottawa by Justice of the Peace Brian Mackey; Crown Counsel Alicia Gordon-Fagan.
- 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.
- On February 5, 2019, a worker and co-worker were in the process of checking the gap clearance on the recently replaced brake assembly on an elevator. The task involved using a gauge to measure the gap between the drum and the brake pad.
- The co-worker was at the control panel of the elevator. The controls were set on manual override.
- The co-worker pressed the control to move the elevator in the up direction which resulted in the sheave (pulley) rotating counterclockwise. This created a pinch point between the cables and the sheave.
- The worker was caught in this pinch point; an arm was pulled into the cables and rotated at least half-way around the sheave. The co-worker immediately reversed the direction of the elevator which freed the arm.
- The worker sustained injuries and required surgery.
- One of the primary factors that caused this incident was that the elevator motion was not stopped (locked out) prior to work being performed on it. This is contrary to section 75 of Ontario Regulation 851 (the Industrial Establishment Regulation) which states:
- “…a part of a machine, transmission machinery, device or thing shall be cleaned, oiled, adjusted, repaired or have maintenance work performed on it only when motion that may endanger a worker has stopped; and any part that has been stopped and that may subsequently move and endanger a worker has been blocked to prevent its movement.”
- Section 25(1)(c) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act states that an employer shall ensure that the measures and procedures prescribed are carried out in the workplace. Thyssenkrupp, as the employer, failed to ensure that the elevator was locked out in accordance with the regulation.