Mining firm fined $200K after worker killed by falling tree in northeast Ontario
The worker was fatally injured when exiting a bulldozer at a work site outside Timmins, Ont.
TIMMINS, Ont.—A Quebec-based mining company has been fined $200,000 after a worker exiting a bulldozer was killed by a falling tree at a drilling site in northeast Ontario.
The incident took place at an Orbit Garant Drilling Services Inc. site outside Timmins, Ont. in June 2014 when two workers were finishing their shift.
The Ministry of Labour said a number of factors led to the incident, including the workers traveling on a bush road not approved by the company due to poor conditions on the typical route and the two workers riding in a single bulldozer cab because of a broken down ATV—something that’s against procedure.
When one of the workers stepped out of the cab of the bulldozer, a standing dead tree—known in the logging industry as a chicot—fell. The 2,000 pound tree struck the cab door and fatally injured the worker.
The court found Orbit Garant did not take every reasonable precaution to protect its workers—pointing to the company’s failure to remove all dead trees from the route in and out of the work site. It said the company should have known the workers would not walk through the soft and muddy conditions on the normal route to the drilling area.