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Atlas Dewatering Corp. and supervisor fined $81,000 total after worker injured


February 16, 2011
By Alyssa Dalton

February 16, 2011

Atlas Dewatering Corporation, a Concord, Ont. company dealing in groundwater control, was fined $75,000 on February 10 for a violation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) after a worker was injured. Patrick Maher, a supervisor with the company, was fined $6,000 in relation to the same incident.

On June 12, 2009, Atlas Dewatering Corporation was working at the bridge between Chapman St. and Silver Lake Rd. in Port Dover. The company was installing a temporary cofferdam (an enclosure within a water environment that allows water to be pumped out to create a dry environment) so that engineers could inspect the existing dam. Workers were using a crane to install the cofferdam while an electrical conductor remained energized overhead.

A worker came into contact with the crane’s hook and received an electrical shock that caused extensive nerve damage leading to amputation.

A Ministry of Labour investigation found that there was less than three metres between the crane and the energized 4800 volt conductor at the time of the incident.
Atlas Dewatering Corporation pleaded guilty to failing to ensure that there was at least three meters between the crane and the energized conductor. Patrick Maher pleaded guilty to the same.

In addition to the fines, the court imposed a 25-percent victim fine surcharge, as required by the Provincial Offences Act. The surcharge is credited to a special provincial government fund to assist victims of crime.