March 10, 2021
Convicted: Canadian Linen and Uniform Service Co., 20 Atomic Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, a uniform rental and linen supply service.
Location of Workplace: 20 Atomic Avenue, Toronto, Ontario.
Description of Offence: A worker on foot outside a building was struck by a company vehicle. The lighting in the area was inadequate and insufficient to ensure the safety of workers in the area.
Date of Offence: October 30, 2018.
Date of Conviction: March 5, 2021.
- Following a guilty plea in provincial offences court in Old City Hall court in Toronto, Canadian Linen and Uniform Service Co. was fined $120,000 by Justice of the Peace Michael M. Fernandez; Crown Counsel Indira Stewart.
- 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.
- In the early morning hours of October 30, 2018, a worker employed by Canadian Linen was walking through a parking lot behind 20 Atomic Avenue (Building B) toward a building next door, also operated by Canadian Linen, at 24 Atomic Avenue (Building A). The worker was parked behind Building B and was walking between parked cars in the lot toward Building A until coming out into the open area.
- The worker walked across the open area between the loading zone and the parking lot to access the entry of Building A and walked between two vehicles that appeared to the worker to be parked.
- One of the vehicles, a Linen Service vehicle, started to move toward the worker in a left turn, and struck the worker. The driver of the vehicle was also a Canadian Linen employee and was leaving the workplace to begin making deliveries.
- The worker was injured by the contact with the vehicle.
- The investigation by the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development determined that the lighting levels in the area where the worker was struck did not provide sufficient illumination levels to ensure the safety of workers in the area.
- The issue of inadequate lighting in the parking area in question had been raised by the workplace Joint Health and Safety Committee just prior to the incident.
- Section 21 of Ontario Regulation 851/90 (the Industrial Establishments Regulation) requires that “where natural lighting is inadequate to ensure the safety of any worker, artificial lighting shall be provided and shadows and glare shall be reduced to a minimum.”
- On October 30, 2018, Canadian Linen failed, as an employer, to ensure that the measures and procedures prescribed by section 21 of Ontario Regulation 851/90 were carried out at the workplace, contrary to section 25(1)(c) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.
- Canadian Linen has three prior convictions in relation to three previous incidents:
- A worker was killed after being struck by the rotating inner drum of a washing machine. Canadian Linen pleaded guilty to March 11, 1996 and received a sentence of $150,000.
- A worker fell off a table while trying to fix a problem with an overhead conveyor belt. Canadian Linen pleaded guilty on June 7, 2007 and received a fine of $85,000.
- A worker was injured after falling through a metal net. Canadian Linen pleaded guilty on October 2, 2008 and ultimately received a fine of $95,000.