FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – WorkSafe BC handed out five fines worth over $685,000 to Fort St. John worksites so far this year.

Canfor was fined $674,445.93 on January 7th for “high-risk violations, and repeated violations based on violations that had occurred at other locations of this firm.”

After a worker was injured, the company allegedly failed to report to WorkSafe in a timely manner. An inspection of the planer bridge where the worker was injured showed it was not adequately safeguarded.

There were also no security measures in place to stop a worker from accessing the planer while in operation.

WorkSafe also found excessive amounts of secondary wood dust on surfaces in the planer room. An inspection took place prior to the planer bridge incident where WorkSafe reported large amounts of primary and secondary wood dust in several areas, including near potential ignition sources.

“The firm failed to ensure its combustible wood dust management program was followed, and failed to ensure the health and safety of all workers at its worksite,” says WorkSafe BC.

A request for review of the penalties has been received.

Eneldo’s Construction Ltd. was handed a $2,500 fine on January 26th after two workers were seen without fall protection equipment will reshingling the roof of a house.

“No other form of fall protection was in place, exposing the workers to a fall risk of up to 4.9 m (16 ft.). The firm failed to ensure fall protection was used, a repeated and high-risk violation.”

FST Donair was fined $5,000 on April 22nd for obstructing a WorkSafe officer inspection and for failing to provide all means to facilitate an inspection.

WorkSafe arrived at the restaurant for an inspection after complaints of restricted tobacco smoking taking place at the workplace, according to WorkSafe. An employee was seen trying to get rid of evidence before allowing the WorkSafe officer to conduct an inspection.

Industrial Surplus Supplies was fined $2,935.88 on April 26th for failing to have a qualified inspection done before allowing demolition work to take place.

WorkSafe found vermiculite, a suspected asbestos-containing material (ACM), had been disturbed when demolition work began. WorkSafe deemed this a high-risk violation as no hazardous materials survey was conducted.

Another firm, 1245160 B.C., was fined $2,500 after a worker was installing a sloped roof on a house without fall protection equipment.

“The firm failed to ensure fall protection was used, a repeated and high-risk violation.”