Canadian Safety Reporter

February 2019

Focuses on occupational health and safety issues at a strategic level. Designed for employers, HR managers and OHS professionals, it features news, case studies on best practices and practical tips to ensure the safest possible working environment.

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Safety Reporter Canadian February 2019 New hire raises safety complaints, gets fired, wins more than $30,000 Worker fired after raising health and safety issues at work; Only with company for 3 months BY JEFFREY R. SMITH AN ONTARIO company must pay a former short-term employee more than $30,000 in damages for firing him because of health and safety issues he raised less than three months into his employment. David Knapp, 38, was hired as a cabinet maker on Feb. 12, 2018, by Greenbank Custom Woodworking, a producer of cabinetry and other woodworked products in Port Perry, Ont. In addition to cabi- net making, his job duties also included some welding and driving. Company cleared of liability in death of Saskatchewan oil and gas worker Worker overwhelmed by powerful release of gas and liquid from pipeline; Unlikely extra precautions would have changed outcome BY JEFFREY R. SMITH A TRAGIC INCIDENT in which a Saskatchewan worker was quickly overwhelmed and killed by poisonous gas wasn't reason- ably foreseeable and couldn't have been prevented by the em- ployer, the Saskatchewan Pro- vincial Court has ruled. Nalco Champion is a global company that provides mid- stream analysis for the oil and gas industry with a Canadian headquarters in Rocky View, Alta. It provides services to about 50 oilfield companies in Saskatchewan and Manitoba that includes analysis of samples of "produced water" — crude oil SHIPPING COMPANY WORKERS UNLOAD ON EACH OTHER Worker fired after physical altercation that followed taunts by co-worker pg. 5 WORKERS' COMPENSATION BENEFITS FOR MISSED RETURN-TO-WORK PERIOD Benefits ended even though worker didn't return as expected; Workplace accident aggravated condition pg. 6 INSIDE NEWS BRIEF Accident > pg. 4 Credit: Shutterstock/g_tech Worker fired > pg. 2 PM #40065782 APPEAL OVER 'BURN PITS' ILLNESSES REJECTED WASHINGTON (Reuters) — The U.S. Supreme Court has rejected a bid by U.S. troops sickened by smoke from open-air pits used to burn waste in Iraq and Afghanistan to revive a lawsuit against defense contractors KBR and Halliburton. The lawsuit claims former sol- diers developed various cancers, neurological damage and other illnesses, often fatal, because of negligent operation of the pits. The case centered on the li- ability of KBR and Halliburton over waste disposal services they pro- vided the U.S. military in Afghani- stan starting in 2001 and Iraq starting in 2003. KBR was part of Halliburton until 2007. The Richmond, Virginia-based 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the consolidated law- suits amounted to a "political ques- tion" that Congress and the presi- dent should resolve, not the courts. The plaintiffs said they were harmed because the companies did not follow correct safety proce- dures and placed the pits too close to occupied areas. The contractor used the pits to dispose of plas- tics, tires, batteries, medical waste and other material that released airborne toxins when burned. NEW WORKPLACE STRESS ENTITLEMENTS MAY NOT BE SO STRESSFUL FOR EMPLOYERS New Ontario legislation grants workers' compensation benefits for mental health injuries, but the bar is high pg. 3

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