In one month, several construction and development businesses were fined for creating significant fall risks for workers in the Tri-Cities.
WorkSafeBC issued a combined $10,000 in violation tickets to three companies at housing project sites in Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam and Port Moody — all included a lack of guardrails to prevent employees from injury or worse.
And, according to the public reports, one company repeatedly violated a stop-use order that required them to install a safety railing before continuing its work.
Canadian Quality Stucco Ltd. was slapped with a $7,500 fine for exposing its workers to potentially falling as high as 20 feet after it didn't set up any protection.
The local business was setting up stucco — a thin layer of concrete primarily used as a decorative coating for walls and ceilings — at a three-storey Coquitlam house when WorkSafeBC inspected the site.
Officials say they saw two employees working on a balcony platform with no rails and setting up a wood-frame scaffold more than six metres above the ground, which led to the stop-work order until guardrails were in place.
A further investigation found Canadian Quality Stucco Ltd. violated the order as it continued to work on the unguarded platform.
"The firm failed to ensure fall protection was used, and failed to comply with a WorkSafeBC order, both repeated violations," the agency explains in its report.
"The firm also failed to ensure work platforms were designed and installed according to applicable standards, and failed to provide its workers with the information, instruction, training, and supervision necessary to ensure their health and safety. These were all high-risk violations."
On the same day that ticket was issued, May 17, 2022, a Surrey business was setback $1,250 for failing to ensure worker safety while at a new house in Port Moody.
WorkSafeBC explains A.M.J. & Sons Holding and Construction Ltd. did not provide guardrails or barriers to prevent its employees from accessing an area next to a pit that had been dug for a pool.
The agency also determined A.M.J. & Sons did not securely cover the pit, impeding its safe accessibility for workers.
As well, Jagpal Development Ltd. was also asked to pay $1,250 for a lack of guardrails at its construction site in Port Coquitlam.
The Surrey firm was working at a six-storey apartment building.
WorkSafeBC determined it incurred "multiple safety deficiencies" at the upper levels of the complex, including little to no safety rails at door openings.
"The firm failed to ensure it provided stairways to each floor level before undertaking construction of the next level, and failed to ensure elevated work areas had guards or guardrails," the report reads.
"The firm also failed to conduct regular inspections of its workplace to prevent the development of unsafe working conditions."
The fine was imposed on April 14, 2022.