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Thread: Welding shop charged for fatal explosion

  1. #1
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    Welding shop charged for fatal explosion

    A shop near where I live and owned by people I have worked with before has been been found guilty by OHS on 2 counts. The guy that mostly runs/owns it was a foreman at a shop I worked. The owner there was always yelling and screaming and went through a lot of employee's. The foreman could be a jerk at times. I also worked with someone who had worked for him (the foreman) at his new shop. He said the owner was told to stay out of the shop and let the foreman run it because he used to yell and scream all the time when he came in the shop. Clearly picked that up when he was a foreman at the other shop.

    At the time of the explosion I figured it was the result of acetylene accumulating in a room that perhaps wasn't properly vented to the outdoors. Especially bad that it happened at Christmas/New years time. I'm not sure if the families of the deceased and injured have filed lawsuits or not. Seems like they would have better chances now that the shop was found guilty. Don't feel sorry the shop was fined $300,000. Seems way too low for a life lost and permanent disabilities.

    https://globalnews.ca/news/4802992/n...atic-injuries/

    https://www.thesafetymag.com/ca/topi...plosion/253846
    Last edited by Welder Dave; 07-09-2021 at 01:03 PM.

  2. #2
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    Re: Welding shop charged for fatal explosion

    Quote Originally Posted by Welder Dave View Post
    Don't feel sorry the shop was fined $300,000. Seems way too low for a life lost and permanent disabilities.
    I don't know what it's like in Canada, but in the US that shop would be sued out of existence by the families of the victims.

    Tim

  3. #3
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    Re: Welding shop charged for fatal explosion

    So sad for those families, and probably would have been easily preventable with some foresight.

    Do private lawsuits in Canada cover punitive damages, or only actual damages?
    Last edited by Munkul; 07-12-2021 at 05:37 AM.
    Murphy's Golden Rule: Whoever has the gold, makes the rules.

  4. #4
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    Re: Welding shop charged for fatal explosion

    I'm not sure about how the law works in Canada but pretty sure the families could sue the company and add punitive damages. There's a reason most shops have cylinder racks outside. One welding supply I worked at had the all the cylinders inside but were only allowed so many acetylene and they were kept away from the other cylinders. Still scary though if one was to have a slight leak that wasn't noticeable. I think the soapy water test for leaks should be mandatory for cylinders kept inside a building. The company was charged but I don't know if a leak detection system is mandatory or how heavily enforced it is. There were no leak detection systems I was aware of in any of the welding supplies I worked in. Almost seems like it's a law but not enforced until there's a problem. Even the way it's written seems suspect... Shack sounds more like an old farm building kids play in than a necessary storage facility for cylinders.

    Section 3(1)(a)(i) of the OHS Act, for failing to ensure the health and safety of their workers by not using a leak detection system in the acetylene shack.
    Last edited by Welder Dave; 07-12-2021 at 12:35 PM.

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