March 16, 2018 An Ontario court ordered Walker Aggregates Inc. to pay fines totaling CAD$170,000, or about $131,000, for the firm’s role in the 2017 death of a quarry worker, the Ontario Ministry of Labour announced Tuesday. A worker was fatally injured at the Orilla, ON quarry on Feb. 6, 2017 while readying machinery for production re-start following a brief, seasonal shutdown. As the worker cleaned ice buildups from the tension pulley on a conveyor while the equipment was running and its wire mesh gates, intended to prevent access to moving parts, were open. A metal bar used to clear the ice was caught between the conveyor and the pulley’s steel drum, and the worker was pulled into the equipment with the bar. Severely injured in the head, the worker was later pronounced dead at the scene. An investigation by the Ministry of Labour revealed that the equipment was not de-energized or locked out/tagged out as workers cleaned off ice from the conveyor’s pulley. Officials said that it was unnecessary to power the machinery during the ice removal and that Walker Aggregates did not provide any precautions to block worker access to the machinery’s moving parts. Walker Aggregates plead guilty to violations of section 196(6) of the Mining Regulations (Regulation 584) for failing to de-energize and lock out/tag out and taking other precautions to prevent injuries. On March 12, 2018, Justice of the Peace Neil Burgess of the Orillia court ordered the company to pay fines as well as a 25% victim surcharge mandated by the Provincial Offenses Act.

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