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Canadian manufacturer fined over workplace electrocution

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A Canadian employer pleaded guilty and was fined CA$110,000 ($75,669) for a workplace electrocution.

An employee of Thorndale, Ontario-based manufacturer Ideal Drain Tile Ltd., now known as Ideal Pipe, was killed in July 2013 when working alone on a machine from an elevated forklift platform, according to a statement issued Monday by the Ontario Ministry of Labor. There was no operator at the forklift's controls as required, and the machine was not powered off, according to the statement.

The employee was electrocuted when he came into contact with the machine's plug, which had been disassembled, exposing the prongs of the plug, according to the statement.

Ideal Tile pleaded guilty to failing as an employer to ensure compliance with the provisions of Ontario's Industrial Establishments Regulation, specifically that the forklift's controls were manned by another employee while a worker was on the elevated platform, according to the release.

The court also imposed a 25% victim fine surcharge, which goes into a provincial government fund to assist victims of crime, on top of the fine.

A company spokesperson could not be immediately reached for comment.