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Conveyor roller repair at Algoma Steel results in injury to worker

Sault Ste. Marie, ON -- Steel manufacturer Algoma Steel Inc. of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., has been fined $130,000 for...


Sault Ste. Marie, ON — Steel manufacturer Algoma Steel Inc. of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., has been fined $130,000 for a violation of Ontario’s Occupational Health and Safety Act that resulted in serious leg injuries to a maintenance employee.

On Nov. 23, 1999, two workers were repairing a roller in a conveyor on a slabcaster (a machine that rolls and cuts hot slabs of steel) when the roller fell and pinned one of the worker’s legs to a beam.

Workers had to use cable slings and an overhead crane to raise the roller in order to free the worker. The injured worker suffered a compound fracture to his leg.

A Ontario Ministry of Labour investigation revealed the workers performing the repairs did not normally work with slabcaster equipment and were not familiar with the dangers involved in their task. As well, the roller was not blocked or secured to prevent accidental movement.

The accident occurred at Algoma’s steel mill on West Street in Sault Ste. Marie. Algoma Steel Inc. pleaded guilty to failing to ensure the roller was blocked to prevent accidental movement before maintenance was performed, as required by Section 75 of the Regulations for Industrial Establishments, contrary to Section 25(1)(c) of the act.