WorkSafeBC fines company over $23k for “high-risk violations” in FSJ

FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – WorkSafeBC has issued a penalty to a Fort St. John worksite after a safety violation res…

FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – WorkSafeBC has issued a penalty to a Fort St. John worksite after a safety violation resulted in an injury.

The incident was considered a high-risk violation for the employer, RMC Construction Materials.

According to a release from Yesenia Dott, government & media relations officer with WorkSafeBC, a worker was injured by a wear plate being removed from a concrete mixer. When WorkSafeBC investigated the worksite, the agency found “multiple health and safety deficiencies.”

“The firm failed to ensure equipment was locked out and that workers had access to personal locks,” reads the release. “The firm failed to provide safe work platforms to access work areas, failed to ensure fall protection was used where required, and failed to ensure fall protection anchors were certified by a professional engineer.”

In addition to the fall protection and equipment violations, WorkSafeBC identified that the firm failed to have a qualified person to develop a control plan for respirable crystalline silica (RCS), and failed to instruct workers in any RCS safe work practices.

Lastly, the report says the company failed to plan its workplace to protect workers from danger, and it failed to provide workers with information, instruction, training and supervision necessary to ensure worker health and safety.

The company was fined $23,158.80 on November 12th, 2021.

WorkSafeBC says the primary purpose of an administrative penalty is to motivate the employer receiving the penalty to comply with occupational health and safety legislation and regulation to keep workplaces safe.

Penalty amounts are based on the size of the company’s payroll as well as the nature of the violation.

“Penalties can be larger if certain specific factors are present, such as for high-risk or intentional circumstances, or if the employer has received a penalty about a substantially similar violation in the past three years,” reads the WorkSafeBC backgrounder on administrative penalties.

In 2020, WorkSafeBC imposed 412 penalties, totalling around $7.7 million.

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