Cyclone fined $60,000 for aircraft wing injury
Workers were attempting to steady the component to keep it from swinging during a lift
MISSISSAUGA, Ont. — Cyclone Manufacturing Inc. was fined $60,000 after pleading guilty in provincial offences court in Mississauga, Ont. for failing to take proper precautions and provide safeguards, resulting in an injury to a worker.
The manufacturer in Mississauga, Ont. is a provider of sheet metal fabrication, tube bending, welding and minor sub-assemblies of aerospace structural components for aerospace companies.
On March 27, 2019, a worker was assisting two co-workers with the rigging and flipping of a wing component. They were setting up a single-sling choker hitch used to lift and flip a wing component. The component weighed roughly 2,000 pounds and measured about 22 feet in length.
The workers were attempting to steady the component to keep it from swinging while one operated the crane pendant to lift it from supporting tables. The supporting tables had free-moving wheels that did not lock in place.
As the wing component was being prepared to be lifted off the tables with the single-sling choker hitch, the table that was supporting the wing on one side suddenly slid out. As the table slid out, one end of the wing became unbalanced, sloped to one side, and ultimately descended to the floor, pinning one of the workers to the floor.
The worker was injured and required surgery.
A Ministry of Labour investigation found the setup was commonly used to lift wing components was used twice per week. Because this method does not provide 360-degree contact with the load, it’s not suited to moving long, heavy loads that are difficult to balance.
The ministry also found the wing was placed on supporting tables composed of a steel frame with four legs and a wooden top, with wheels at the bottom of the legs that move and do not lock in place.
Cyclone did not have a means of securing the wheels, causing one of the tables to slide out and the wing to drop, injuring the worker. In addition, the single-sling choker hitch set-up in use at the time of the incident was not suitable for lifting the long, heavy wing component.