|A roundup of important new legislation, regulations, court cases and board rulings that we covered in 2012 in the Safety Compliance Insider.
LAW OF THE YEAR
First Aid Requirements
The Minimum First-Aid Regulations were repealed and Part 18 (Minimum First-Aid Requirements) was added to the OHS Regulations, taking effect June 1, 2012.
CASE OF THE YEAR
YK Court Confirms Duty under OHS Laws to Protect Non-Workers
The Yukon Department of Community Services (Department) hired a contractor, who in turn hired a licensed blaster to conduct explosive blasts to remove rock for a road project During the largest blast, a nearby trailer court was showered with flyrock, which caused property damage and endangered tenants. The Department, the contractor, a supervisor and the blaster were charged with OHS violations. The blaster pleaded guilty; the rest went to trial. The trial court convicted the Department, contractor and supervisor and the appeals court upheld the convictions. (It overturned the government’s conviction on unrelated grounds.) The appeals court concluded that the duties under the OHS laws aren’t “limited to situations where workers are endangered or injured but rather require that work is performed without undue risk to anyone.” The whole purpose of the OHS law is to promote safe work practices at all times, including ensuring safety for members of the public who are near the workplace, ruled the court [R. v. Government of Yukon,  YKSC 47 (CanLII), June 11, 2012].
OTHER NOTABLE CASES
Mining Company Fined More than $100,000 for Death of Apprentice Mechanic
An apprentice mechanic was killed by a vehicle at an underground mine. The vehicle had been parked on an incline, but its emergency brakes failed and it rolled back and struck him. The company pleaded guilty to two OHS violations and was fined more than $100,000 [Procon Mining and Tunnelling, CBC News, Oct. 20, 2011].
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