A crane rental company has been convicted of charges under the
Occupational Health and Safety Act and fined, after
criminal negligence charges against it were withdrawn.
In 2009, a worker was killed after a crane owned by Millenium
Crane Rentals Ltd. rolled into an excavation and pinned the worker
to the wall.
The Ministry of Labour's news release states that Millenium
Crane was found guilty of failing to maintain the crane in a
condition that would not endanger a worker. A Ministry of
Labour inspection had found that the crane was in a state of
disrepair. In particular, parts of the braking system were
found to be broken and deteriorated, including seized calipers and
worn out brake pads and drums. The crane had only 25% brake
function in its four rear wheels and only 31.25% in its four front
Interestingly, the Ministry of Labour's press release states
that, "The Crown, however, could not prove that the lack of
maintenance on the crane caused the crane to roll into the
excavation and fatally injure the worker." It was likely
for that reason that the criminal prosecutors dropped the criminal
negligence charges – often referred to as "Bill
C-45" charges – against the worker.
This case is a reminder that the OHSA and criminal charges are
not the same and involve different requirements. The fact
that criminal prosecutors drop charges does not mean that the
company will be able to successfully defend against OHSA
The Ministry of Labour's press release may be read
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