October 18, 2016 - 2:30 PM
VERNON - The Vernon School District has been slapped with a hefty fine for not maintaining a safe workplace.
The $75,000 penalty came after WorkSafe B.C. conducted an inspection at the school's maintenance department in November 2015 and discovered health and safety violations.
“The employer failed to effectively identify asbestos-containing material (ACM) in its workplaces with signs, labels, or other means. It also allowed workers to work in areas contaminated with ACM or potential ACM without taking necessary precautions and without providing training in how to recognize these hazards,” states WorkSafe B.C.
WorkSafe describes the violations as “high-risk.”
In May 2016, WorkSafe imposed a $75,000 penalty for the violations, stating the school district “failed to take sufficient precautions for the prevention of work related injuries or illnesses” and “did not exercise due diligence to prevent these circumstances.”
According to WorkSafe, employers cannot allow any work that would disturb asbestos-containing material unless necessary precautions have been taken to protect workers.
The School District requested a review of the fine, but the appeal was rejected. The fine was disclosed this past month.
The $75,000 will go into the Workers’ Compensation Board Accident Fund.
We requested an interview with the Vernon School District on Thursday, Oct. 13 and despite being told to expect a call from a spokesperson on Monday, Oct. 17, we did not hear back by deadline.
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