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Garbage collection firm charged for worker's death

By COS staff

New Brunswick waste management firm Dominion Refuse Collectors has been charged under the Occupational Health and Safety Act for the death of one of its workers last year, according to a statement from WorkSafeNB.

On December 2, 2010 at approximately 8:25 a.m., Adam Harris, a 25-year-old employee of Dominion Refuse Collectors, died when he was struck by a large garbage bin that was being hoisted into the back of a refuse collection truck while collecting refuse in Blacks Harbour, N.B. Harris was from Canal, near St. George, NB.

WorkSafeNB investigators undertook an extensive and lengthy investigation following the incident, looking beyond the obvious causes of the incident to identify the underlying causes. This is standard practice in all serious workplace accidents and fatalities, WorkSafeNB said.

Several orders were issued against the employer after the accident. These included: requiring repairs to the bin locking mechanism at the back of the truck; training for workers in safe dumping of bins; and, development of a training program for operators required to hoist bins into trucks.

WorkSafeNB staff also determined that Dominion Refuse Collectors failed to comply with a key provision of the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Act, namely that they failed to provide adequate supervision and training to ensure the health and safety of employees. WorkSafeNB has laid a charge against Dominion Refuse Collectors and the partners who make up that partnership, TwoEx Capital Inc. and Mar Mor Enterprises Inc.

Because this matter is now before the courts, WorkSafeNB is unable to provide further information. All court proceedings are open to the public.

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