A press release from the Ministry of Labor states “a worker at the Oshawa plant was showing a co-worker how to perform a task on the automatic guided vehicle (AGV) repair crib. The worker provided the co-worker with the preliminary steps to be taken for the task, which involved removing screws from a ball screw assembly, then was called away. The co-worker removed all the screws except one.
“Upon returning, the worker began to show how to retract the ball screw and did so while sitting on top of the frame of the AGV with the lift table raised above. There was no blocking material in place between the lift table and the AGV to prevent the lift table from accidentally falling. The lift table and a pallet that is used to hold the car frame fell on top of the worker. Other workers rushed to assist and raised the lift table with pry bars. The worker was taken to Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and underwent surgery for injuries that included a number of broken bones.”
An investigation into the matter discovered the cause of the collapse was due to a faulty screw in the lift table assembly. The automaker pleaded guilty to not adhering to the procedures in Section 74 of Ontario Regulation 851/90. The automaker is expected to ensure “machinery, equipment or material that is temporarily elevated and under which a worker may pass or work shall be securely and solidly blocked to prevent the machinery, equipment or material from falling or moving,” which resulted in the ruling.
GM Canada will also have to pay a 25-percent victim fine surcharge in addition to its $160K fine, which will be credit to a government fund to assist victims of crime.