Mining company fined $70k over critically injured worker

The worker suffered ‘crushing injuries’ that required surgery

Mining company fined $70k over critically injured worker

An Ontario mining company has been fined $70,000 after a worker was critically injured at a copper ore mine.

FNX Mining, which operates a mine in the Sudbury area, was slapped with the penalty after a guilty plea concerning a 2017 incident involving a worker being injured while riding in the bucket of a scooptram.

An engineer from the Ministry of Labour who assessed the equipment said the scooptram was used inappropriately. The bucket was not designed to take on riders.  

The court ruled FNX “failed to take reasonable precaution of ensuring that the scooptram was used in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions”, the way it was intended to be used.

The worker was said to be using the scooptram to load extracted ore from a funnel-shaped opening known as a draw point. The worker noticed the in-and-out movement of the scooptram had damaged ventilation tubing. Diesel fumes began to fill the area.

A supervisor instructed a second worker to assist with the repair. The first worker positioned himself in the bucket while standing partly on a mesh to fix the damage. The second worker operated the scooptram, raising the bucket, curling it back, and lifting part of the mesh.

“As the bucket rotated back and up, the worker in the bucket was pinched between the bucket and the frame of the machine as the hydraulic cylinder was closing. The worker suffered crushing injuries requiring surgery,” a statement from the Ministry of Labour read.

FNX also faces a 25% penalty surcharge. The fund will be allocated to a special provincial government assistance fund for victims of crime, the Ministry of Labour said.

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