Canadian Manufacturing

Ontario utility contractor hit with fine after two workers suffer electrical burns

The incident occurred in Strathroy, Ont. in 2016 when two workers in a six-person crew were changing a switch on a utility pole


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LONDON, Ont.—An electrical utility contractor in southwestern Ontario has pleaded guilty and fined $70,000 after two workers suffered burn injuries last year.

The Ministry of Labour says that on Aug. 11, 2016, a six-person crew working for Entegrus Powerlines Inc. was changing a switch on a utility pole in Strathroy, Ont.

It says a safety cover on the lines was removed while they were working and not reinstalled.

While workers were forming leads needed to install the switch, the end of the lead made contact with the live power line and an energy surge went through the utility pole.

Two of the workers were in contact with the pole at the time and suffered electrical burns.

Entegrus Powerlines Inc. pleaded guilty Aug. 31 to failing to take the reasonable safety precaution of ensuring that a dedicated observer was in place with no other duties but to monitor the work continuously.

A London, Ont., court ordered the company to pay the $70,000 fine and also imposed a 25 per cent victim fine surcharge that goes to a provincial fund to victims of crime.


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