A widely-reported fire at a Kingston construction site that
required the evacuation of a crane operator by helicopter, has
resulted in fines against the owner of the company that supplied
the crane operator.
To avoid the heat from the fire, the crane operator was forced
to crawl out on the boom of the crane, which was about 100 metres
in the air. A military helicopter rescued him.
Shortly after the incident, a Ministry of Labour inspector
contacted the company owner to request crane records. The owner
provided some but not all of the information. The MOL inspector
attempted to interview the owner but was unable to reach him by
telephone or at his residence.
The Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act
provides, in section 62, that no person shall hinder or obstruct an
inspector; every person shall co-operate in respect of an
inspector's investigation; and no person shall provide false
information to an inspector or refuse to provide information
required by an inspector.
The company owner was charged with and convicted of the
Occupational Health and Safety Act offences of (1)
knowingly furnishing an inspector with false information or
neglecting or refusing to furnish information required by an
inspector, and (2) failing to furnish all necessary means in the
person's power to facilitate any entry, search, inspection,
investigation, examination, testing or inquiry by an inspector. He
was personally fined $19,000.00. His company was also found guilty
of failing to comply with a requirement of an inspector, and was
This case illustrates the broad powers of Ministry of Labour
inspectors and the consequences of interfering with an
The Ministry of Labour's press release may be read
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