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Power company fined after worker's electrocution on solar farm project


An Ontario company has been found guilty of violating the province's health and safety regulation in the fatal electrocution of an employee and has been fined 110,000 Canadian dollars ($86,064).

Kingsville, Ontario-based power generation company Enerquest Services Inc. was convicted of violating the Ontario's Occupational Health and Safety Act by the Provincial Offences Court/Ontario Court of Justice in Whitby, Ontario, last week following the worker's December 2013 death while working on a solar farm construction project, according to a statement issued Friday by the Ontario Ministry of Labor.

The company directed two workers to correct deficiencies in a prefabricated electrical building at the project, according to the ministry. The two workers plugged in a generator to an outside receptacle on the north side of the building to provide power to the building, its interior receptacles and operate its emergency lighting system while they made the necessary repairs. One of the workers was installing a door interlock in a high-voltage section of the building and accidentally came into contact with and received an electrical shock from a transformer. He was found by the co-worker and transported to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

The employees worked on or near energized exposed parts of electrical equipment or of an electrical installation or conductor while the power supply to the electrical equipment, installation or conductor was not disconnected, locked out of service and tagged in accordance with the provincial regulation, according to the ministry.

Enerquest failed to establish and implement written measures and procedures to ensure that workers were adequately protected from electrical shock and burns and failed to make a copy of the written measures and procedures available to every worker on the project, according to the ministry.

A company spokesperson could not be immediately reached for comment.

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